Romania. Relations between Romania and Moldova deteriorated at the beginning of the year. According to Countryaah website, national day of Romania is every May 9. Moldova blamed Romania for involvement in hostile demonstrations in Moldova and Romania responded by accusing Moldova of deliberately creating tensions in the region.
The contradictions between Romanians and ethnic Hungarians continued throughout the year. The mayor of the city of Cluj, Romanian nationalist Georghe Funar, opposed the right of Hungarian-speaking residents to public service in their own language. According to the law, the authorities must provide such services if the minority constitutes more than 20% of the population.
Through the Schengen cooperation, Romanians were able to travel to Western Europe from the beginning of the year without a visa. This led to increased immigration of Romanians to EU countries. The French authorities stated that thousands of Romanian street children were in Paris and Marseille. The French interior minister visited Romania and demanded that the country do more to prevent what the French media called “gypsy beggars and thieves” from reaching France. The Romanian government’s efforts to stop emigration in turn led to criticism for discrimination against Roma. The deep poverty of the Roma in Transylvania has driven many to try to find work in neighboring Hungary. This opportunity was also limited during the year.
Romania achieved a long-awaited goal when the country was invited to the NATO Alliance in 2004 as a member of the military alliance from 2004. After the Prague Summit, US President George W. Bush visited Bucharest, where, before a large crowd, he welcomed the country into NATO..
However, Romania and neighboring Bulgaria became the only candidate countries put aside when ten other states were approved as EU members in December in December. However, according to the EU, Romania had made progress during the year and was encouraged to prepare for membership in 2007. Politically, the country met for membership and was also said to have made improvements in human rights. The economy had also progressed somewhat. Growth was estimated to be 3% during the year and unemployment dropped slowly to below 10%. However, the EU demanded more reforms in business. In the social field, demands were made for further improvement of the conditions for the many orphanages in Romania.
In June 2015, the National Anti-Corruption Directorate initiated investigations against Prime Minister Ponta for fraud, tax evasion and money laundering. Parliament initially refused to raise his parliamentary immunity, but Ponta traveled several times in the following months to get the criminal charges at a distance. In September, however, the case came to court, where Ponta along with 4 others were indicted. In October, a nightclub in Sofia was hit by a fiery fire that cost 64 people its lives. The fire triggered extensive demonstrations that also demanded Ponte’s departure, and he now resigned. In November, President Iohannis inaugurated the independent Dacian Cioloș as new prime minister. He formed a technocrat government, which was subsequently approved by Parliament.
Like the rest of Eastern Europe, the country was in sharp opposition to the EU’s attempt to establish a common distribution system for the many hundreds of thousands of refugees who came to the EU in 2015. However, in September, it was required to accept 6,315 refugees over the following 2 years.
A fire in a Bucharest nightclub in October cost 64 people their lives. The escape routes were completely inadequate as panic in the club erupted when a pyrotechnic show came out of control. The fire sparked a political scandal that forced Prime Minister Victor Ponta to resign. He was replaced at the post by the politically independent Dacian Cioloș.
The December 2016 parliamentary elections were the first for the new proportional electoral system. 311 deputies, 136 senators and 18 deputies were elected as representatives of minority groups. The election was won by the ruling Social Democratic PSD, which went about 10% to 45.5% of the vote, while the right-wing PNL went back 7% and had to settle for 20%. However, turnout only reached 39.5%. An expression of deep frustration with the political corruption in the country. The PSD chairman, Liviu Dragnea, was sentenced in April 2016 to 2 years suspended prison for election fraud in the 2012 election, but despite the verdict, he refused to resign as party chairman.
After the election, PSD entered into an alliance with the small liberal party ALDE, which had gained 5.6% of the vote in the election. It provided the basis for a majority government with PSD’s Dragnea as prime minister, but President Iohannis refused to accept Dragnea as prime minister because of his April ruling. Instead, the party proposed Sevil Shhaideh, but this too was rejected by the president. If so, she would have become the country’s first female and Muslim prime minister. Dragnea then talked about the possibility of asking the president for a court of justice, but in the end, Social Democrat Sorin Grindeanu was brought forward and accepted as prime minister. However, his political life was short lived. A few weeks after his deployment he made a proposal to decriminalize corruption. At least in the case of amounts below € 44,000. The change in the law would include. a. have benefited PSD Chairman Dragnea, who was accused of corruption at € 24,000. The argument for the proposal was that the country’s prisons were already overcrowded, but it sparked widespread popular protests over a month and a half that drew up to 5-600,000 people. The unstable political situation also triggered a power struggle internally in the PSD. In April, Dragnea accused Grindeanu of trying to build his own power base to remove Dragnea from the presidency. In May, the other government ministers resigned from their post, in June Grindeanu was excluded by the PSD and the same month his “government” fell, which then consisted only of himself for a vote of no confidence in parliament. He was replaced at the post by Social Democrat and former Finance Minister Mihai Tudose who formed a new government.