Romanian Justice minister Tudorel Toader announced a set of proposals on Wednesday to reform the judiciary. The package of proposed legislation shows Toader fell in line with Social Democratic leader Liviu Dragnea's requests and complied to put forward a counter-reform of the Justice system in a country that has struggled to properly reform it for more than a decade. It is now essential that magistrates react firmly as their very independence is at stake.
The Saxon villages have caught the attention of the public opinion with the arrival of Prince Charles in the region, and even today, the most of the foreign tourists who visit this area are the Germans who, either wish to learn about their origins, or come to visit a region where people speak their language. However, every year, for one week, the crowd gets bigger, due to the thousands of Romanian tourists who come to enjoy the the Saxon traditions and natural landscape. Of course, they are joined by hundreds of Transylvanian Saxons, who return to their homeland, but also by travellers from other countries, as Haferland Week has already became an iconic celebration for this region.
A small cartel formed of influential business people, media owners and corrupt politicians is investing energy and resources in an attempt to persuade Western governments that the fight against corruption in Romania, the anti-graft body DNA and its chief Laura Codruta Kovesi no longer deserve their support. We are witnessing a major change of tactics in the fight against prosecutors investigating high level graft. DNA's "clients" have understood that in order to have peace in the country a lot of noise has to be made abroad. Changing laws and killing institutions would be in vain if Brussels or Washington intervene in their support and put them back under pressure.
Have you heard about the Russian propaganda in its pure status, subsidized by ourselves, by our taxes? Yeah, it’s possible, and it’s scandalous. Radio Romania Actualitati, the station funded by your money, is a box of resonance for Kremlin’s official positions, broadly broadcasted, with no editorial filter, without any discernment, for tens of minutes of radio show. Last night, for dozens of minutes I had the feeling that I was listening to the communist radio journals, when Romania was allied with Russia (then USSR), in the Warsaw Pact, when it was a comrade in ideology with China and North Korea, and the US, Japan and South Korea were the bad imperialists.
President Klaus Iohannis’ statements issued on Tuesday seem to have aimed to save the DNA and extinguish the fire started inside the DNA. On the other hand, Liviu Dragnea pushed the Justice Minister on Wednesday to say something about scandal, suggesting that the situation is bad. Justice Minister Toader will have to choose between two options. Will he save Kovesi again or will he call for her removal?
Romanian MPs voted a new Social Democratic government on Thursday, which later was sworn in a ceremony hosted by the Presidency. But even before it new prime minister Mihai Tudose and his team were sworn in, they caused shock among Romanian business and political circles, with a series of controversial nominations and by announcing with no prior debate a series of plans that would turn the country's tax system upside down.
In 2009, the PDL representative Ioan Olteanu issued the most plastic definition for the political compromise: he compared the PDL’s alliance with PSD with “swallowing a frog.” Now, it was Klaus Iohannis who had to swallow a frog. Tudose government seems to be a bullfrog which is too big even for Romanian political standards.