Romania: European Institutions must defend the rights of Romanian citizens

Today, the European Parliament, at the initiative of the Greens/EFA group, will debate with the Prime Minister of Romania, the state of corruption and the rule of law in Romania after the police attacked peaceful protestors this summer. Thousands of Romanians are fed up with high-level graft and moves by the government to weaken anti-corruption measures. The Socialist and Liberal coalition government dismissed the head of the anti-corruption agency, Laura Codru?a Kövesi, back in July and are attempting to alter the criminal code to push through an amnesty for officials charged with corruption offences.

Ska Keller, President of the Greens/EFA group comments:

"Romania with its proud tradition of fighting for freedom and civil liberties is taking a dangerous step in the wrong direction. The firing of the head of the anti-corruption agency, the potential amnesty for corrupt politicians and tear-gassing peaceful protestors are extremely worrying moves for any EU country to make, especially one that is about to take the reins of the Council presidency.

"The de-facto legalising of corruption is a worrying route to take away from European values and one the Romanian government should seriously reconsider. European institutions must defend the rights of Romanian citizens as well as the rights of every European citizen. The European Commission must trigger its rule of law framework and monitor the situation in Romania closely. We should not have to start another Article 7 procedure, the time for action and change in Romania is now."

"Romania's place is at the heart of Europe. The government must not backslide on the progress made in the fight against corruption and the strengthening of independent institutions. We support the democratic movements standing up for the rights of all Romanians."

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