EC will request clarifications from the Romanian Government on the latest ordinances, spokesman says

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The European Commission will request clarifications from the Romanian Government, in regard to the ordinances adopted on Tuesday upon the initiative if Justice Minister Tudorel Toader, with direct consequences on the magistrates’ independence.

A spokesman explained on Wednesday the point of view of European Commission.

“The Commission is following with great concern the latest developments concerning the rule of law in Romania. Both the content and the procedure of the latest changes, by using emergency ordinances without any consultations with the judiciary and the stakeholders, seem to be in direct contradiction with the recommendation of the Commission in the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism endorsed by all Member States.

Let me remind you that in our November report, we urged Romania ‘to put in place the robust and independent system of appointing top prosecutors based on clear and transparent criteria, drawing in the support of the Venice Commission.’

Our report also asks ‘to revise the justice laws taking fully into account the recommendations under the CVM and issued by the Venice Commission and GRECO.’

These latest changes follow a different track. As we said before, Romania needs to very urgently put the reform process back on track. This means going forward, not backwards and abstaining from any steps which reverse the progress accomplished over the past years. The Commission will seek clarifications from the Romanian Government on these latest changes.”

The Government adopted on Tuesday two emergency ordinances in the field of justice.

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