Social Democrats seek referendum backing for ban on Ceaușescu collaborators in justice system


At the request of Romanian President Klaus Iohannis for party advice on his planned national referendum on the justice system, a PSD delegation today sought his consent for a question which would have the effect of banning former Ceaușescu officials from the Romanian justice system.

The delegation, led by Eugen Nicolicea, Vice President of Romania’s Chamber of Deputies, introduced Marin Iancu and Ioan Muntean, two former political prisoners under the pre-1989 Communist regime, whose appeals for early release were repeatedly denied. The person they and PSD hold responsible for this is Augustin Lazar, current Prosecutor General for Romania who at the time was chairman of the Senate Prison Commission. The PSD-led government has tried repeatedly to have Mr. Lazar removed from office but has faced opposition from President Iohannis.

With regard to Mr. Iancu, a former general in the military, his case was reviewed four times by Mr.  Lazar’s Commission and each time it was considered that he should not be released. Instead he was forced to serve his full sentence despite having fulfilled the legal conditions for release.

Similarly, Mr. Muntean was a political detainee at the Aiud penitentiary, imprisoned under the category of extremely dangerous political prisoner for seven years. His release was blocked by Mr. Lazar’s Commission twice. When Mr. Muntean filed a complaint about his treatment in the notorious jail, he was placed in isolation for 10 days.

The PSD delegation proposed that President Iohannis include a question seeking voter approval of a ban on former torturers and other collaborators in the Communist regime being allowed high ranking state positions.

Following their meeting, the delegation reported  that President Iohannis said he would think about this.

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