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Roma boy returned to his parents
A second child taken from a Roma family in Ireland has been reunited with his parents.
The two-year-old boy was removed from his family home in Athlone in the midlands yesterday and placed in the care of the Health Service Executive (HSE).
Investigating gardai were believed to be acting on concerns about the child's appearance, but were satisfied about the little boy's identity after carrying out inquiries.
He was returned to the family this morning.
Meanwhile DNA tests are being carried out to identify a blonde, blue-eyed seven-year-old girl removed from a Roma family in Dublin on Monday.
The youngster has spent two night in the care of the State after a member of the public reported the youngster was living with the family in a house in a south Dublin suburb.
Her family believe she will be returned to them this evening
No arrests have been made and family members are not facing an allegation of abduction.
Action to seek a care order was taken after gardai believed the family was unable to prove the girl's identity conclusively.
A couple who claim they are the girl's parents said she was born in the Coombe Hospital in Dublin in April 2006 and is their daughter.
However officers removed the youngster after spending several hours at the Dublin property on Monday.
It is understood that a name and date of birth the parents gave did not match records with the register office and a passport bore a picture of a baby and could not be matched to the seven-year-old.
A number of other children, believed to be the girl's siblings, who were in the house at the time were not taken into care.
Relations from the Roma community said they were upset and claimed that the girl was part of the family and should be returned as the family has documentary proof.
Others said the girl - who was physically well - was not the only member of the family with blonde hair.
Unlike the case in Greece where a girl, known as Maria, was found in a settlement near Farsala, DNA tests have yet to be carried out.
The only similarity between the stories is that the girls are blonde-haired and blue-eyed and had a different appearance from that of the couple they were found living with.
In the Greek case, a DNA test on Maria proved she was not related to Christos Salis, 39, and Eleftheria Dimopoulou, 40, and the couple have been held on charges of abduction and document fraud.
The Immigrant Council of Ireland said the Irish Government should immediately outline what procedures are in place across all public services to prevent racial profiling.
It said the two high-profile cases involving children from the Roma community have raised questions over whether minorities are being subjected to excessive attention from gardai.
Denise Charlton, chief executive of the Immigrant Council, said: "Ireland has already been warned by a Council of Europe report in February about the need to prevent racial profiling, and the events of the past week have done little to reassure migrants that this has taken place.
"The placing of two children from the Roma community into care comes just one week after the Government announced that people from abroad would account for a disproportionate 50% of social welfare checks as part of a new crackdown on fraud.
"Any targeting of members of an individual community for such scrutiny, on the basis of unfounded perceptions that they are more likely than others to break the law, is wrong."
Ms Charlton said robust anti-racism policies and procedures are key to ensure fair access to and delivery of our public services.
"It is time for the Government to outline what procedures are in place to reassure people, both Irish and migrant, that no one need fear being targeted because of their background, belief or colour of their skin," she added.