Romania Parliament manages to pass changes to Criminal Code, giving massive blow to fight against corruption. President, opposition blast "damaging" vote of "a dictatorship of majority" Romania's governing coalition managed to push through a last parliamentary vote on Wednesday a series of massive changes to the Criminal Code, which critics call a heavy blow to the fight against corruption. The parliamentary majority had only a narrow margin of 2 votes to pass the changes. House speaker Liviu Dragnea, leader of the governing Social Democrats (PSD) and, as a politician recently sentenced  for abuse in office, a key beneficiary of the legislative changes, made the rare move to take a seat and cast a vote in order to secure the passage of the law.
���Romanian politicians, people react to prison sentence applied to political leader Dragnea. PM Dancila attacks judges, defends boss A court decision on Thursday to sentence the leader of the governing Social Democrats (PSD) Liviu Dragnea to 3 years and a half under abuse in office charges has sparked a wave of reactions. While Dragnea himself, who is expected to appeal, remained silent, the head of his government defended him publicly and attacked judges who chose the sentence. In the streets of Bucharest, people protested again, while the opposition called for Dragnea's resignation as House speaker. Upheaval is expected within the PSD as well.
Romania governing party leader Dragnea receives prison sentence in corruption case / Verdict not final ���Liviu Dragnea, the leader of Romania's Social Democrats (PSD) and speaker of the House of Deputies, received a 3 years, 6 months sentence in a case involving fictitious employment of people at an institution in the county of Teleorman, where he used to run the regional authority. The verdict is not final as it can be appealed.updating
���Thousands of Romanians renew protests against governing party over fight against corruption / German journalist apparently retained by gendarmes Some 4,000 people attended a new protest against the Romanian governing coalition's moves to change the legislation in order to weaken the fight against corruption, with thousands others joining similar protests across the country. The protest in Bucharest took place amid rising tensions between participants and gendarmes, with one German journalist apparently retained in a well coordinated raid by law enforcers. Demonstrations flared at the end of a politically heated day, with Opposition submitting a censure motion against the government, protests within the Parliament and journalists roughed up by governing party politicians.
Tensions rise as Romania's government coalition deals legal blow to fight against corruption The governing coalition in Romania used its majority in the Parliament this week to push through a series of changes to the Criminal Procedure Code, which are seen as a major blow to the fight against corruption. On Tuesday, President Iohannis accused the governing Social Democrats (PSD) of voting laws for the benefit of their own leader, while the opposition have accused the coalition of turning Romania into a "criminals' paradise". All these, while a major representative of the US Government was visiting Romania and showed support for the fight against corruption.
���Renewed tensions between govt party PSD, President Iohannis over fate of Romania's top anti-graft prosecutor Kovesi Tensions between Romanian President Klaus Iohannis and the governing Social Democrats (PSD) over the fate of the country's top anti-graft prosecutor spiraled again on Tuesday. Iohannis once again postponed a decision whether to dismiss National Anti-Corruption Directorate (DNA) chief Laura Codruta Kovesi, prompting PSD officials to increase pressure and even talk of actions to suspend the head of state.
Russia Ambassador to Romania pickpocketed in Sibiu - news report Russia's Ambassador to Bucharest, Valery Kuzmin, was left without a wallet while in a central square of the Central Romania city of Sibiu, according to news agency. It reports that the ambassador, who was left without money and his diplomatic card, submitted a complaint with the police.
���Throngs brought to Bucharest for governing coalition protests against "parallel state", seen as show of force for strongman Liviu Dragnea against anti-graft prosecutors Hundreds of thousands of people, many brought by buses from across the country, attended a massive protest organised by the Romanian governing coalition - which controls the government, the parliament and most public institutions - against what it calls a "parallel state" and "abuse of power". The coalition, led by Social Democratic (PSD) strongman Liviu Dragnea, used the event to attack the authority of President Iohannis and the prosecutors of the anti-graft body DNA, headed by Laura Codruta Kovesi, whom they accuse of "hurting democracy".
Romania Constitutional Court president speaks on recent visit to Russia The President of the Romanian Constitutional Court, Valer Dorneanu, has for the first time spoken about a recent visit he paid to Russia despite Foreign Ministry recommendation not to do so.
GDPR: Law on authority to supervise processing of personal data adopted The Romanian Senate has adopted changes to the law on the functioning of the national authority for the supervision of personal data processing, ANSPDCP. The body will increase its control personnel, which would be able to fine or ban, in certain cases, the processing of personal data.
European Commission notes independence of Romania judiciary questioned, judicial institutions under pressure The situation of the Romanian justice system is the subject of a large part of an European Commission analysis as part of its specific country recommendations for 2018. It points to recent legislative evolutions, how the independence of justice and the anti-corruption legislative framework have been affected, to corruption within the state-funded sector at all levels and to suspicions of fraud in public tenders, which affect building of highways and hospitals in Romania.
Nine dead in Hungary crash involving Romania-registered vehicle At least nine people died in a crash near Budapest, Hungary on Tuesday, as the Romania-registered small bus they were travelling with collided with a truck, according to the Romanian Foreign Minisry.
Romania, facing serious lack of highways, plans to include political leader Dragnea's marginal county on future highway route Romania's government is expecting that three highway projects would be finished through public-private partnerships within five years, deputy PM Viorel Stefan said on Tuesday. One of the planned highways crosses the county of Teleorman, known to be the stronghold of governing party leader Liviu Dragnea - a county which is off all major transportation routes in a country which faces a lack of highways in key regions.
Romania Senate speaker Tariceanu acquitted in false testimony case Romania's High Court of Justice acquitted Senate speaker Calin Popescu Tariceanu on Tuesday in a case where he was charged with false testimony, news agency Mediafax reported. The decision is not final.
Romania President Iohannis scolds government again, asks if it has money for pensions, salaries until end of year Romania President Klaus Iohannis criticised the government's troubled economic policies again on Tuesday, urging it to state clearly if it has any more money to cover salaries and pensions until the end of the year. His statement comes as the government has become mired again in a scandal over suspected plans to suspend contributions to a private pensions fund.
Governing party leader Dragnea, targeted by criminal complaint, blames President of "seating at table with head of state" which Romania doesn't recognize The leader of Romania's governing Social Democrats (PSD) Liviu Dragnea on Friday launched a fierce attack against an opposition leader and the President after the former submitted a criminal complaint against him. Dragnea blamed the complaint on decisions he claims were made by the Presidency and he pointed out that President Iohannis "sat at the same table with a state which Romania doesn't recognize - Kosovo".
Superior Council of Magistrates says Justice minister statement may affect independence of prosecutors Romania's Superior Council of Magistrates (CSM) says that statements made by Justice minister Tudorel Toader, who spoke of unfair repercussions in cases where preventive arrests were made, may affect the independence of prosecutors when it comes to the adoption of procedural solutions.
Air quality: Romania referred to the EU Court of Justice The European Commission on Thursday referred Romania and five other EU countries to the Court of Justice of the EU over its failings when it comes to air polution.
Romania opposition leader submits criminal complaint against prime minister Dancila, governing party leader Dragnea for high treason The leader of Romania's main opposition group, Ludovic Orban of the National Liberal Party (PNL), has submitted a criminal complaint at the Prosecutor General's office against prime minister Viorica Dancila and Liviu Dragnea, the leader of the governing Social Democrats (PSD). He accuses them of high treason, disclosure of state secrets and usurpation of functions, the office has told
Romania governing party drops plans for "big demonstration" in support of traditional family Romania's governing Social Democrats (PSD) for now are dropping plans for a "big demonstration" in support of the traditional family, an event which sparked massive controversy as it was due to fuel a referendum on constitutional changes. The party argued it could not organise it given that President Iohannis refused to approve a law on referendums and challenged the bill to the Constitutional Court.


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