Last edited: February 14, 2005

New government, new promises from Romania

Newsplanet, Wednesday April 22, 1998

Romanian PM's Promises: In the wake of criticism voiced this week by human rights watchdog Amnesty International at the meeting of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg (NewsPlanet April 21, 1998), Romanian Prime Minister Radu Vasile made strongly-worded promises of improvement on April 22. In contrast to his lukewarm, defensive response in Strasbourg, once back in Bucharest he told Reuters, "Our government cannot accept any repeat of such cases [of human rights violations], even if they are isolated [incidents].... Even if those cases date back to previous governments."

In fact, Vasile and his Christian Democrat-led group only took power last week, after their predecessors resigned. Vasile continued, "I will expressly ask the responsible institutions to take resolute steps to stem such practices.... Even if I deem those cases to be isoalted, we are resolved to bring the necessary legal changes." Along with the change of leadership, the Romanian parliament agreed to make legal changes to match the standards of the European Union the nation hopes to join, including further reform of the sodomy law.

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