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“Romania’s presidency seems to fail before it starts”: Gunther Krichbaum – reaction to anti-German violent statements made by government officials

de Mariana Bechir , 9.9.2018

Romania’s presidency of the Council of the European Union seems to fail even before it starts, warns Chairman of the Bundestag European Affairs Committee Gunther Krichbaum (photo) in an interview with Hotnews.

The Berlin official refers to recent slippages of Darius Valcov and Liviu Pop, which he says affects German-Romanian relations, especially since no delimitation existed from the Government, which shows that they are accepted and assumed by the majority coalition.

What it is about:

Liviu Pop compares the United States, Germany, Austria, and the Netherlands with some cockroaches, in an image posted on Facebook related to the alleged strategic interests of these countries regarding the exploitation of the natural gas in Romania:

*

  • STOP! Gases do not leave Romania for free                        Well, we arrest you and still take them
  • America          Austria             Germany         The Netherlands

*

Liviu Pop also posted messages on Facebook according to which The Forum of Germans in Romania is a Nazi-based organization and its former leader, Klaus Iohannis, is, as a consequence, a Nazi.

Darius Valcov, the right hand of Prime Minister Dancila, compared President Klaus Iohannis with Hitler in a graphic illustration, followed by a text in which the Democratic Forum of Germans in Romania was labelled as a fascist organization that has Svastica as the logo.

Several publications in Germany and France have written about this political attack that uses symbols whose promotion is banned by law, including in Romania and offends German people:

Olguta Vasilescu, a minister in the Romanian Government, said after the repression of protest on August 10, referring to President Iohannis’s criticism, that “you should have courage, as a German, to talk about gassing.”

Harsh statements by Gunther Krichbaum, Chairman of the Bundestag European Affairs Committee for Hotnews:

  • Recent slippages are the sad apogee of a dispute that has lost the measure. These people (Valcov and Pop-editor’s note) became intolerable in the positions they hold. It can be seen that the intensity of the attacks keeps increasing.
  • At the same time, some red lines have been crossed several times, including by criticizing the German Forum, which was presented as the continuation of the Nationalist Socialism.
  • It should be noted that the use of swastikas and other anti-constitutional symbols in Germany is a crime.
  • At the same time, such behaviour shows a shocking ignorance of the history. Since the Government of Romania has not clearly distanced itself from all that, it seems reasonable to assume that it deliberately accepts, if not controls them.
  • In addition to the good German-Romanian relations being affected, that leads to an even higher loss in prestige for the Romanian Government at the international level.
  • Romania is under the close supervision of the European Commission. So for me it is very clear that MCV cannot be ended.
  • For the Presidency of the Council of the European Union that follows (in 2019 – editor’s note), these are not good signs. The presidency seems to fail even before it starts.

The parliamentary group of minorities demands Darius Valcov’s dismissal

The parliamentary group of national minorities has asked Premier Viorica Dancila, with a letter, to dismiss the advisor Darius Valcov following the post in which he associates the emblems of the Democratic Forum of Germans with the swastika.

“The parliamentary group of national minorities has taken note with concern about the appearance in the public space of a presentation of the Democratic Forum of Germans in Romania having the electoral sign and the logo (heart) replaced with the swastika,” the letter states.

Romanian-German Chamber of Commerce: We want to believe that the message does not represent the official position of the Romanian Government

The Romanian-German Chamber of Commerce (AHK Romania) will take a stand against the slippage of some officials in recent weeks regarding the approach to the German community, announced on Tuesday evening Dragos Anastasiu, President of AHK Romania.

“We will never deny the dialogue with the Romanian Government, although we want to believe that things that happened yesterday, for example, regarding the messages of an advisor of the state, do not represent the official position of the Romanian Government on the German Forum. It is a matter that concerns us; AHK will react, through a letter addressed to the Government, by which we express the hope that these slippages are not the official position of the Romanian Government,” the AHK President said.

“We are somewhat in a paradox, one year ago we also were, but now there is more: in an economic situation, even very good for the German community in Romania, on all pillars of activity that our members have, and the entire community in Romania, we are well but, on the other hand, we are worried because there are some issues that are important to Romania and which we see as hindrances,” said Anastasiu at the monthly meeting of AHK Romania members. Dragos Anastasiu is the Chairman of Eurolines group, which has activities in transport and tourism.

In addition to the fact that “the sentiment of the German community in Romania is not a positive one”, the President of AHK Romania listed, among the obstacles, the lack of labour force, lack of digitization and lack of decrease in bureaucracy, Romania’s image, infrastructure, health and education, first of all.

German Forum will notify the judiciary

The Democratic Forum of Germans in Romania (FDGR) has issued a press release stating that it firmly rejects the Facebook post of Darius Valcov, the advisor of Prime Minister Viorica Vasilica Dancila, which suggests that the FDGR would be a Nazi organization:

“The FDGR reiterates that it is the legitimate representative of the German minority established on the basis of the Romanian Constitution and the legislation in force, having a statute approved by Romanian courts (…)

Considering the repeated attacks of PSD members, since 2014, the FDGR has the right to refer not only to the courts and institutions in Romania (as it did so far), but also to those of the RFG under the Treaty between Romania and RFG signed on April 21, 1992, which stipulates the shared responsibility for protecting the rights and preserving the identity of the German minority in Romania.”

 

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