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What the newspapers say: April 3, 2007

de     HotNews.ro
Marţi, 3 aprilie 2007, 0:00


Romanian newspapers on Tuesday turn the government reshuffle presented yesterday inside out: with the exclusion of President Basescu’s Democrats, the Liberal-dominated government is fiercely attacked for breaking the balance of domestic and foreign policies of the past two years, for its individual ministers, for its appearance as a business circle and for its dependence on the opposition.

Evenimentul Zilei is probably the fiercest in its reports related to Liberal (PNL) prime minister Calin Popescu Tariceanu. “The Iasi Mafia names the head of Romanian Justice”, one of its main headlines sounds.

It shows that independent Justice minister Monica Macovei, who’s been seen as a key reformer, is replaced by Tudor Chiuariu.

Chiuariu is a young Liberal, promoted by a mogul from the city of Iasi, Ralu Fenechiu. Fenechiu has been associated with many a dubious business at local level, especially a series of real estate deals marked by suspicions of corruption.

Evenimentul Zilei describes the performances - or the lack thereof - of nominated ministers as well as dubious deals some of them have been involved in and moves on to report that some of them - Teodor Melescanu (Defense), Ludovic Orban (Transport) - are known for their loyalty to the Liberal group that has formed around businessman

Dinu Patriciu. Patriciu is the head of the Rompetrol oil group, who had to face organized crime prosecutors repeatedly over the past two years.

And an analysis in the same newspaper predicts that these radical moves would deal a heavy blow to the credibility of the Liberal Party, which will have to “annex itself to bigger parties” in order to subsist on the political stage.

Meanwhile, Adevarul, a newspaper owned by Dinu Patriciu, is milder with the new government reshuffle and focuses its attention on President Traian Basescu, who’s been left without the support of his Democratic Party allies and is “a prisoner in Cotroceni”, the presidential headquarters.

The newspaper only mentions the name of Iasi mogul Relu Fenechiu, but notes that he has three friends in the new government - Chiuariu, as well as Cristian David (Interior minister) and Cristian Adomnitei (Education).

Another newspaper, Gandul, prefers structure more than in-depth analysis and reports in its main article that “impartial” President Traian Basescu urged the Parliament not to validate the “illegitimate government” of Liberals and Hungarian Democrats.

The same reference to “illegitimacy” is also attributed to the Democrats, who were removed from the government, and focuses on the past performances and policies to be promoted by various of the new ministers.

It also reports that the Democrats believe ousted Justice minister Monica Macovei may become a presidential counselor as rumor has it she has already received an invitation in this regard.

Cotidianul, meanwhile, calls the new executive team “the Patriciu-Fenechiu Government”, due to the huge influence held by the two businessmen over the new ministers. It reports that Interior minister-nominee Cristian David is the son-in-law of a “protected” Liberal leader in Fenechiu’s Iasi.

Cristian Adomnitei is presented as Romania’s first post-1989 Education minister who has not served as professor or researcher - but as an engineer who has collaborated extensively with Fenechiu.

Teodor Melescanu is presented as a politician who’s been involved in an intelligence scandal back in the nineties and who was employed as a manager at businessman Dinu Patriciu’s Rompetrol company. And Ludovic Orban, nominated for the Transport portfolio, also figured on the payroll of several of Patriciu’s companies.

And the paper reports that following the government reshuffle President Traian Basescu loses control over the Supreme Defense Council of the country, which will now be dominated by ministers under PM Tariceanu’s wing.

Last but not least, Romania libera notes that given its new face the scheme managed to displease many members of the right wing in the Liberal Party, including minister-nominee Ludovic Orban, who at a party vote rejected the list even though he was included on it.

Orban is quoted as having warned Tariceanu that the party would be judged in the next 20 years according to the performance of the new government, which would have to rely on the Social Democrats to push his measures through parliament.\




















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