International press agencies, newspapers and TV stations across the globe continue their reports on Monday on the May 19 referendum where President Traian Basescu received a crushing support from Romanians to return to office. Financial Times writes about Basescu “surviving” the vote.
France’s Le Figaro predicts further political turmoil in Romania, as does the Deutsche Presse Agentur.
Financial Times writes that European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has immediately urged politicians in Bucharest to stick to the path of reform as government leaders lost their bid to oust the President in the referendum.
The paper recalls that Romania is facing a serious corruption problem and risks the activation of a EU safeguard clause by July unless it fulfils promised reform.
And it quotes Romanian analysts who believe Basescu might have to wait until the 2008 elections to promote bold changes, given that corruption is still rooted deeply in the Romanian administration.
For its part, Le Figaro reports that the referendum has not put an end to the power struggle in Bucharest as the presidential palace welcomes back a head of state that is practically powerless in his dealing with a determined opposition.
USA Today, meanwhile, expects many of the governing Liberals to press PM Calin Popescu Tariceanu into collaborating more tightly with President Basescu from now on.
Back in France, Liberation writes that ‘Popeye’ - a nickname for President Basescu - returns to Presidency as many of his adversaries still complain that his hunger for power prove him a dictator in the making.
But it quotes Jean-Michel De Waele, a professor in Brussels, according to whom “To depict Traian Basescu as a champion of the fight for democracy is exaggerated, but comparing him with Mussolini or Ceausescu is also ridiculous”.
And DPA reports that political forces in Romania are expected to realign after the May 19 referendum and believes that “Basescu now returns to the office he had to leave during the referendum campaign with a strengthened mandate after three quarters of the public voted not to impeach him”.