Appeal to the interim president of Romania and to the
authorities of the European Union
Bucharest, 22 April 2007
To Mr Nicolae Vacaroiu – Interim President of Romania
To Mr Jose Manuel Durao Barroso – President of the European Commission
To Mr Hans-Gert Poettering – President of the European Parliament
To Mr Franco Frattini – Vice-president of the European Commission, Justice Commissioner
We address this letter on the occasion of the seventeenth anniversary of the demonstrations in University Square, Bucharest, the longest anticommunist demonstration in history – fifty-two continuous days and nights.
We mention that, in June 1990, the said demonstration was crushed with unprecedented savagery, shocking the entire civilised world and gravely compromising Romania’s image.
Esteemed Nicolae Vacaroiu – Interim President of Romania,
On 15 March this year, we sent you The Appeal to the Parliament of Romania and to the European Parliament signed by more than seven hundred and fifty intellectuals, six non-governmental civic organisations, and two trade unions representing more than a million members. The Appeal was registered as no. 499/15.03.2007 by the Senate Registrar and was addressed to the President of the Senate.
Likewise, the Appeal was registered as no. 1240/15.03.2007 by the Registrar of the Chamber of Deputies. In spite of the fact that in such cases the law stipulates that the authorities are obliged to reply within thirty days, we have yet to receive any acknowledgement.
We mention that the English version of the Appeal was sent by post to Mr Hans-Gert Poettering, President of the European Parliament, and confirmation of its receipt has been given.
On 6 April this year, we addressed an open letter to the new Minister of Justice, Mr Tudor Chiuariu, registered as no. 48108/10.04.07. We have yet to receive any reply.
At the same time, we mention that almost two years ago, on 14 June 2005, The Appeal for Romania was published, addressed to the authorities of state by the leading civic organisations of Romania. Under Point 5 of the Appeal for Romania, the signatories demanded finalisation of the inquiries into the events surrounding the massacre of December 1989 and the fratricide of June 1990.
Esteemed Mr Vacaroiu, in your new capacity as interim president of Romania, we ask that you should assume with full responsibility the duty of mediator between civil society and the institutions of state.
To this end, in the name of the signatories of this appeal, we solicit that you demand that Parliament should immediately comply with the desiderata of civil society whereby the crimes of the communist regime shall be fully condemned only when the recommendations of the Presidential Commission for Analysis of the Communist Dictatorship in Romania have become the reality of which Romania is in
such great need. Parliament has the moral duty to bring about such a reality. We solicit the parliamentary parties, which proclaim themselves to be democratic but which have up to now rejected the official condemnation of 18 December 2006, to reconsider their position and to support the condemnation of the crimes of communism by taking unequivocal steps.
We regard as despicable the attitude of certain parliamentarians who implicitly or explicitly defend the communist regime, which was guilty of imprescriptible crimes against humanity.
In this context, we mention a remarkable fact: the official condemnation pronounced by the head of state, as well as the document of state (the report) upon which the condemnation was based, have won exceptional appreciation at the recent debates to which we were invited in the United States, between 13 and 16 April this year, at Princeton University, Harvard University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (see www.roconsulboston.com/Pages/InfoPages/Commentary/Communism/IliesiuAward.html).
Esteemed Mr Interim President, in the name of the signatories of the above-mentioned appeals, we solicit that you support the demands of civil society for the discovery of the truth concerning the massacre of December 1989 and the fratricide of June 1990.
We solicit that you ask the new Minister of Justice to express publicly his support for the “solution with the utmost celerity” of the December 1989 and June 1990 cases.
We underline the fact that the solicitation of civil society is supported by Attorney General Mrs Laura Codruta Kovesi (according to a communique of 12 February 2007), who has ensured all the necessary conditions so that the prosecutors investigating the causes of the Revolution and events of June 1990 will be able to finalise and solve these cases with the maximum celerity.
We mention that inquiries were commenced seventeen years ago by various parliamentary commissions, but that their conclusions were vague. Inquiries by the Justice System were not commenced until 1999, and were suspended during the Iliescu-PSD government (2000-2004), thereby blocking the discovery of the truth for another four years.
The inquiries were resumed immediately after the change of political power, in December 2004. In November 2006, Chief Magistrate Mr Dan Voinea declared that finalisation of the “June 1990” inquiry was imminent.
He specified that thirty-four political and public figures were accused of and would be tried for very serious crimes, punishable with sentences of between fifteen years and life imprisonment. According to the statements of Chief Magistrate Mr Dan Voinea, in the case of the “December 1989” inquiry, the number of the accused would be significantly higher.
We stress that we are extremely concerned as a result of the statement made today by Mrs Monica Macovei, the recently fired Minister of Justice. According to the latter, a number of the parliamentarians who voted for the suspension of President Basescu are to stand trial while others are under investigation.
Our disquiet is heightened by the recent declarations of Mr Emil Boc, President of the Democratic Party. According to the latter, the coalition that suspended President Basescu is at the same time pursuing the replacement of the Attorney General of Romania, Mrs Laura Codruta Kovesi, and the Chief Prosecutor of the National Anti-corruption Department, Mr Daniel Morar.
At the same time, Mr Boc stated that the scope of their dismissal is to block current penal investigations and halt further penal investigations.
Esteemed Mr Interim President of Romania, as a guarantee of the public hopes placed in the rule of law, we solicit that you act decisively and immediately so that such unqualified illegalities shall not be permitted. Likewise, we solicit that those parliamentarians summoned to trial or under legal investigation should immediately be suspended from Parliament until proven innocent.
Esteemed Messrs Jose Manuel Durao Barroso, Hans-Gert Poettering, and Franco Frattini,
Given it is in the interests of the European Union that Romania should be cleansed and healed of all traces of the criminal communist dictatorship, we solicit your support in the resolution of our demands.
In the appendices to the present letter, we include the “Appeal for Romania” (14 June 2005), the “Open Letter to Mr Tudor Chiuariu, the Minister of Justice” (6 April 2007), the “Appeal to the Parliament of Romania and the European Parliament” (11 March 2007). We request that you read their content with exceeding care. We express our anticipatory thanks.
Bucharest, 22 April 2007
In the name of the signatories of the appeals referred to in the present letter, I sign as their author, Sorin Iliesiu – Vice-president of the Civic Alliance, member of the Group for Social Dialogue, Romania.