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Romanian Justice minister suggests critical report on fighting graft was not made by GRECO experts, questions their competence Justice minister Tudorel Toader on Wednesday questioned the competence of GRECO experts he has talked to before the Council of Europe body put forward a critical report on the fight against corruption in Romania and attempted changes to the laws of the judiciary. He claimed Romania was not a subject in European talks on activating Article 7, as it happened in the case of Poland.
Romanian MPs continue talks on changes to criminal law, table proposals protecting criminals Romanian MPs in charge with pushing a series of changes to the Penal Code proposed a new wave of criminal-friendly amendments to the legislation on Tuesday. These include a change that would threaten prison sentences for people who reveal information during criminal inquiries and an attempt to lower sentences for bribery.
Former Romanian PM Grindeanu in hearing in graft case related to party leader Liviu Dragnea Former Romanian prime minister Sorin Grindeanu, who served in the first half of 2017, faced hearings at the National Anti-Corruption Directorate (DNA) on Tuesday. He was summoned to the DNA as a witness in the so-called Belina file, which is related to House speaker Liviu Dragnea, the leader of the governing Social Democrats (PSD).
Judges to seal fate of Romanian Senate speaker Tariceanu, accused of false testimony, in late May A decision in the case of Romanian Senate speaker Calin Popescu Tariceanu, who has been judged for false testimony in a criminal case, is expected to be announced on May 22. Anti-graft (DNA) prosecutors called for a 3 year prison sentence for Tariceanu, who appeared before the High Court of Justice one last time on Tuesday. Tariceanu calls the accusations a "mystification".
President Iohannis slams PM Dancila's performance again, calling for her resignation / Dancila's party boss Dragnea dismisses Iohannis' "lies", claims potential "attack on national security" Romanian President Klaus Iohannis renewed his attacks on the Social Democratic (PSD) government on Monday, when he used a report on tax revenues to the state budget to call again for the resignation of prime minister Viorica Dancila. He said she was due to make room "to competent people", considering that the budget balance for the first quarter of 2018 was "completely unsatisfactory".
​Romanian President Iohannis challenges justice laws at Constitutional Court, notifies Venice Commission, says bills not in line with state of law Romanian President Klaus Iohannis on Wednesday deepened tensions with the governing coalition as he announced he would challenge at the Constitutional Court a massive set of laws overwriting the rules of the judiciary and would notify the Venice Commission about them. He said attacks led by the governing Social Democrats (PSD) on the Judiciary resulted in a set of laws that do not comply with the rigors of a state of law or with the expectations Romanians have about the independence of magistrates.
BREAKING Political tensions spiral as Romanian President Iohannis demands resignation of PM Viorica Dancila Romanian President Klaus Iohannis on Friday demanded the resignation of PM Viorica Dancila, calling her unable to fulfill her duties as head of government. The statement comes amid excalating tensions between the head of state and the government, where Dancila is seen as a dummy PM in the hands of Social Democratic Party (PSD) leader Liviu Dragnea, the House speaker.
Romanian PM Viorica Dancila to leave for Israel amid embassy furore on Wednesday The Romanian Government admitted on Tuesday evening that prime minister Viorica Dancila would leave for Israel on Wednesday, where she is due to meet counterpart Benkamin Netanyahu for an exchange of opinions of political and security issues.
UPDATE Latest hearing in PSD leader Liviu Dragnea's abuse in office case due to take place at supreme court on Wednesday, postponed The last hearing in the case where the leader of Romania's governing Social Democrats (PSD) Liviu Dragnea is judged for buse in office takes place at the High Court of Justice on Wednesday, news agency news.ro reports.UPDATE The court has decided to pospone the judgment until mid-May, asking the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA), which launched the case, if it worked with the intelligence service SRI in the case.
​Romania President on possible move of Embassy to Jerusalem: Forcing such a decision would kick over half a century of serious diplomacy Romanian President Klaus Iohannis said on Monday that he talked to PM Viorica Dancila about alleged plans to move the Romanian Embassy to Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. He said he explained her "some issues" and that he believed she understood "a bit better" what are the problems to be taken into consideration in this regard. He made the comments days after the leader of governing Social Democrats (PSD) claimed in a TV show that a decision had been made to move the Embassy to Jerusalem.
Romanian government leader announced "decision was made" to move Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. New political conflict looms as President Iohannis blasts govt plans Alleged plans to move the Romanian Embassy to Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem have sparked a new conflict between Romania's governing Social Democrats (PSD) and President Klaus Iohannis. Tensions rose after PSD leader Liviu Dragnea said in a TV show on Thursday night that a "decision has been made" to move the Embassy to Jerusalem and that the government adopted a memorandum in this regard, although no such document has been made public or announced at government level so far.  The President reacted harshly on Friday morning, blasting the idea of moving the embassy.
Romanian President on proposed changes to criminal law: Some are totally unacceptable Some of the proposals tabled by Romania's governing Social Democrats (PSD) in Parliament to change the criminal law of the country are totally unacceptable, President Klaus Iohannis said on Thursday. He said it was inadmissible that some changes are aimed specifically at helping people at the helm of the Parliament and who face criminal inquiries, as news agency news.ro reports.
Romanian President Iohannis: The threat is the "hostile behaviour" coming from Russia / We encourage US military presence on Romanian territory ​One of the main existing security threat is Russia's "hostile behaviour", Romanian President Klaus Iohannis said on Thursday, who avoided, though, to mention the Russian Federation directly so that he not be "too direct".
​Romania's governing PSD tables massive changes to criminal laws in Parliament, seen as undermining anti-graft legislation and in support of corrupt politicians The governing PSD submitted a series of changes to the Romanian criminal law and criminal procedure law for debate in Parliament this week, changes that, if adopted, may provide strong help to corrupt politicians facing criminal inquiries. The bill, submitted by a PSD deputy known for his legislative initiatives aimed at undermining the fight against graft, are expected to be debated in a special parliamentary commission starting May 2.
Romania govt party leader Dragnea announces massive demonstration in support of traditional family, dismisses rumors of a prime minister's departure Romania's governing party, the Social Democrats (PSD), will organise a massive demonstration in support of the traditional family, PSD leader Liviu Dragnea announced on Monday. He made the announcement as info about a planned PSD demonstration "of 1 million people" had circulated earlier today, in connection with speculation about an alleged intention of prime minister Viorica Dancila to resign.
Romania President Iohannis rejects call to dismiss top anti-graft prosecutor Kovesi ​Romanian President Klaus Iohannis on Monday rejected a call by Justice minister Tudorel Toader to dimiss the head of the National Anti-Corruption Directorate, Laura Codruta Kovesi. He said the arguments presented by the Justice minister were not able to convince him of the necessity to dismiss Kovesi. Minister Toader replied by saying he would notify the Constitutional Court about the refusal.
Romania President Iohannis gives green light to criminal inquiry into ex-leaders in 1989 Revolution case ​Romanian President Klaus Iohannis on Friday sent a request to the Justice minister for the launch of a criminal inquiry against former president Ion Iliescu, ex-PM Petre Roman and another former official, in the case of the 1989 Revolution. The Prosecutor General charges the three with crimes against humanity.
Annual inflation rate up to 5% in March, highest since June 2013 Romania's annual inflation rate rose to 5% in March 2018, up 0.3 percentage points from the previous months, reaching the highest level since June 2013.
Romanian MP targets management of intelligence services with several bills An MP for the governing Social Democrats (PSD) has submitted four bills eyeing the management of the intelligence services, as the PSD leadership has become more vocal about the intelligence community, prompting debates about apparent moves to subdue them politically.
GRECO Report: Council of Europe anti-graft body says its deeply worried about changes to Romanian justice laws, calls on Romania to abstain from other changes that may affect fight against corruption The Council of Europe group of states against corruption (GRECO) says in a report published Wednesday that it is deeply worried about the laws that the Romanian Parliament adopted recently, to change the legislation on the statute of magistrates, on the judiciary system and the Superior Council of Magistrates, as well as about bills to change penal law in the country.

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