Rudderless and headless (Prime Minister Sorin Grindeanu having joined PSD leader Liviu Dragnea in Washington), Romania’s government was eerily silent today. The bloody nose it received on Wednesday night from the surprisingly large protest against its proposed amnesty for all sorts of criminals appears to have taken the wind completely out of its sails. For now.
Few PSD politicians were brave enough to face the press and public on Thursday, the exception being Justice Minister Florin Iordache who – besides declaring that the protesters ‘were not well enough informed’ insisted that the amnesty ‘was not designed for any particular person.’
Meantime, the chorus of disapproval for the amnesty grew louder and louder. Romania’s attorney general Augustin Lazar called it ‘pathetic’, while the US Ambassador in Bucharest Hans Klemm declared that he remained opposed to ‘any measure which weakens the rule of law in Romania.’ Klemm also on Thursday restated his unflinching support for Laura Codruta Kovesi, the director of Romania’s anti-corruption unit, the DNA.
New protests are planned for Timisoara and Brasov on Thursday evening, as well in Bucharest on Sunday.
Bucharest and much of southern Romania is once again set for severely cold temperatures over the next few days. A yellow weather warning is in place until Saturday, with lows of -22°C expected.