EU Commissioner Viviane Reding’s Live Talk on the Romanian Misuse of EU Mechanisms in Relation to the Gregorian Bivolaru Case
By Advaita Mihai Stoian
There are an increasing number of officials being made aware of the illegalities and abuses by the Romanian authorities in the Gregorian Bivolaru case. Some have even questioned the very fabric of Romania’s justice system. Voices from the Supreme Council of Magistrates in Romania reached the EU Commission last year, leading them to complain about the political interference and pressure that magistrates are suffering in Romania. Dozens of MEPs wrote letters of concern in which they requested information about the human rights case of MISA and Gregorian Bivolaru.
This case is fast becoming one of the most notorious cases today, especially since Romania is pushing their abusive behavior to the extreme – convicting a man in a trial with no victim and no proof, requesting the arrest using a breach in EU law and thus blatantly violating the international convention for refugees and asylum seekers.
Meanwhile, the Romanian media is completely ignoring the mounting international pressure, preferring to attack (following political orders) those who voice their concern about the undemocratic and illegal judicial procedures.
Recently the headlines have been dominated by another important key figure of the EU parliament, the chairman of the external affairs commission of the EU parliament, Mr Elmar Brok. He was fiercely attacked using all the possible dirty tricks of the media for writing to the Swedish and Romanian authorities about the Gregorian Bivolaru case. This procedure, which was specific to the communist times of Romania, a personal attack on anyone that criticizes the power, discloses with shocking clarity the degree of corruption that is still present in Romanian politics. Not that they aren’t still tributary to the old fashion in abuses, but they are pushing them to new levels.
More about this new media stunt made by the people in power in Romania in a coming article. Until then, here is how the violation of human rights is still happening in Europe, using the very structure that was supposed to put an end to these practices. Now the EU commission will have to clean up the mess that the Romanians have made in the EU by trying to speculate about a weakness of the legislation just like the clan leaders in Romania are cheating the state by speculating about the flaws in the legislation. After all, it seems that the leaders of Romania are in tight cooperation with all these clans and have a similar mentality.
When will the authorities from Bucharest realize that by now they are only making fools of themselves and their international credibility is going down with every step they stubbornly take in Gregorian Bivolaru’s case? (source: Soteria International’s website)
On 14th October Mrs. Reding visited the Citizens’ Dialogue in Stockholm. The Swedish representative of Soteria International, Mr. Konrad Swenninger brought up the issue of a human rights contradiction between the European Arrest Warrant and the International Convention for protection of Refugees. As an example, Mr. Swenninger mentioned the case of Gregorian Bivolaru, a Romanian political dissident continuously targeted by Romanian authorities and was given political asylum in Sweden. The asylum is now threatened by a European Arrest Warrant issued in June 2013 by Romanian authorities, as a result of a highly controversial decision of the Romanian Supreme Court against Bivolaru. Acknowledging the case, Mrs. Reding stated that indeed the European Arrest Warrant has been a complicated subject in European politics. She and her team have insisted on precise procedures related to the warrant, so that it cannot be used by national authorities to pursue undemocratic interests. Referring to the situation in Romania, Mrs. Reding is concerned that indeed the country struggles with implementation and respect for democratic procedures. Mrs. Reding reminded the audience that in the summer of 2012, the Directorate General for Justice of the EC, which she conducts, severely criticized the attack on the constitution of Romania attempted by opposing Romanian governing parties.
In a follow-up briefing Mrs. Viviane Reding, Mrs. Brigitta Ohlsson, Swedish Minister for EU Affairs and MEP Olle Ludvigsson who co-chaired the meeting with citizens expressed their concern and interest to follow the case and received a communiqué from Gregorian Bivolaru concerning his situation.
In meetings 17th October in Brussels several Swedish MEPs expressed their concern and interest to work for the case, and the Romanian misuse of the European Arrest Warrant to pursue political persecution of the refugee Bivolaru.
We remind that earlier in October the case has been discussed at the Human Dimension Implementation meeting organized by OSCE in Warsaw, both in the plenary discussion on the protection of refugees and in the side-event conference organized by Soteria International. Representatives of the Swedish government assured Soteria International and the international community that Sweden takes its international obligations on Human Rights very seriously and reminded that Swedish legislation, as well as European law, foresee that national courts should take consideration of human rights implications in their rulings.
The statement of Swedish governmental representatives and the strong position of Viviane Reding in matters of defending human rights and democratic procedures bring confidence that human rights will be efficiently protected and countries such as Romania, still on their way to democracy, will be given a strong good example and will be prevented in their attempts to disregard or violate the rights of its citizens.
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