The Social Democratic Party of Romania today issued a statement objecting to the publication by 12 accredited embassies in Bucharest of an open letter expressing concerns on the subject of justice. The Party’s Foreign Policy Department called the letter a violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations which states that embassies are required to raise concerns or seek clarifications by directly addressing the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The statement cites the views of Senator Titus Corlățean, former Romanian foreign minister and coordinator of the foreign policy department. Sen. Corlățean posted a number of objections on Facebook Wednesday. He said the embassies’ letter demonstrated “a lack of courtesy towards a Government designated by a legitimate majority in Parliament, a government that has a consistent pro-European and pro-Atlantic agenda, a government that contributes significantly in promoting the European agenda of the Alliance, including the international effort to guarantee international security and the fight against terrorism.”
The statement is in response to a letter published on behalf of the embassies of Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany , Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the US.
The PSD statement notes that this is only the most recent example of a joint public declaration by the embassies. But it points out that the embassies have failed to condemn “serious abuses” committed in the name of anti-corruption activities by Romanian judicial institutions and the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI), including classified protocols between the SRI and key institutions of the justice system, and violations of fundamental human rights to the presumption of innocence and the right to a fair trial.
“This apparently inexplicable lack of reaction has occurred even when these serious violations of the basic rules for the functioning of fair and independent justice in any democracy have been recognized by both the Constitutional Court of Romania and the High Court of Cassation and Justice, and also by other territorial courts in our country,” the statement says.
The PSD statement acknowledges that there may be topics requiring clarifications “but all these must be achieved with respect for the international legal framework, which must be observed in Romania as it is observed in other democratic states, not through public correspondence, which may constitute political speculation or public manipulation, especially in the national context of two important electoral competitions taking place this year in Romania.”
It also urges the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry for the Implementation of Strategic Partnerships, and their ministers, to drop their “passivity and surprising discretion” and to invite the heads of the embassies concerned for an open dialogue “in a spirit of mutual respect necessary between partners and allies”.