President Basescu and premier Ponta are threatening each other with lawsuits following the alleged undercover agent disclosure. After he openly stated PM Ponta was an undercover SIE officer, the head of state went public again with fresh accusations against the prime minister. Basescu argued that he decided to step in and unveil all this, as there will definitely be lawsuits against Ponta in the future. In Basescu’s view, the Military Court has to take notice, as well. He denied he unveiled Ponta’s former relation with an intelligence service so that Elena Udrea could gain a higher percentage in the presidential race. “Nobody would have forgiven me if Ponta had become President and SIE had been forced over years to officially admit Ponta’s affiliation, following a lawsuit. What would happen to him? How would Romania look like?” Basescu stated. He pointed out that SIE couldn’t hide this secret from the courts’ eyes, as “too many laws have been broken, including the Romanian Constitution, by recruiting Ponta as SIE officer while he was still prosecutor”.
Traian Basescu dismissed SIE press release that said the government decree on the undercover agents’ protection didn’t need for the CSAT approval. “I am surprised at the Foreign Intelligence Office’s involvement in a political row. It is a huge mystery to me why they did it. There are some untruths in SIE press release, the most important of them referring to the fact that ordinance 223/2013 did not need for the CSAT approval. The decree, which classified SIE activities as top confidential, is relating to the state secret defence program”, Basescu explained. He also contradicted ex-SIE head Teodor Melescanu, saying he has never requested the latter a list of undercover agents, but he asked him in writing to say if there are any former or present SIE officers in the incumbent Government and if they were “specialized”. “You cannot deny the President state secrets”, the head of state added. As for Victor Ponta, Basescu said he was just “a politico”, a “racketeer” who joined SIE to travel abroad. “He managed to take part in some round tables, workshops and filled them as ‘sessions’ in his CV, with SIE help”, the President continued.
However, the President blamed not only SIE for this situation, but also the parliamentary committees, which control the intelligence services’ activity. “We wouldn’t have ended like that if it had been for a stronger and more fair parliamentary control”, he said.
On the other side, PM Ponta said Traian Basescu would surely be sued for all the damage he caused to Romania as President. “In order to electorally attack me, he did what no head of state should do: he promoted a lie, he attacked the justice system, he is upset his brother is in jail, he lashed out against intelligence officers who do their job and risk their lives for the country (…) Traian Basescu must be brought to trial not for insulting, for offending me, but for serious actions committed against Romania as head of state. And I am sure he will. The prime minister pointed out that Basescu is still standing on his immunity, yet adding there are files at DNA and Prosecutor’s Office related to Basescu’s actions, but no investigation can be undergone until December 21, when his term runs out. “But do you know how close we are to December 21? I feel so good thinking time is going short”, Ponta concluded.
In another train of thoughts, earlier on Wednesday, Ponta allowed himself to joke about the undercover agent issue, saying he disappointed his kid when he denied having been a spy. “He told me: What a pity! It would have been so cool”, Ponta revealed the conversation with his son.
On the other hand, drifting to a more serious speech, the former director of the Foreign Intelligence Service, Teodor Melescanu stepped in the debate once again, asserting late on Wednesday that he has no information that Victor Ponta was or wasn’t an undercover agent. Melescanu believes he “is just a collateral casualty” in the political war between Basescu and Ponta.