Lithuania and Romania Complicit for Hosting CIA “Black Sites”

On 31 May 2018, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) confirmed in two simultaneously published judgments, Abu Zubaydah v. Lithuania and Al Nashiri v. Romania, that Lithuania and Romania were involved in the running of secret detention facilities of the CIA, so-called “black sites”, on their territories as well as their “complicity” in the execution of CIA’s secret extraordinary rendition programme for suspected terrorists.

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The Taming of the Court – When Politics Overcome Law in the Romanian Constitutional Court

The Romanian Constitutional Court has backstabbed the Romanian President in his efforts to protect the independence of the chief anti-corruption prosecutor. On 30 May 2018, the Constitutional Court ordered the President to dismiss the chief anti-corruption prosecutor via presidential decree. Before, the President had refused the proposed dismissal by the Minister of Justice based on an Advisory Opinion of the Superior Council of Magistracy that stated that the reasons brought forward against the chief prosecutor were not substantiated enough to justify a dismissal.

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Failing to Struggle or Struggling to Fail? On the New Judiciary Legislation Changes in Romania

Like never before in the last 28 years in Romania, huge protests have started against the ‘assault against the judicial independence’. Awareness has been raised as regards the importance of a truly independent judiciary and the disastrous effects of political corruption on the very existence of a liberal democracy.

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Living Democracy in Romania: From Protest to Referendum ?

What happened in Romania in the aftermath of the so called “Second Black Tuesday”? People were demonstrating on the street, Romanian authorities spoke up, the Constitutional Court came to rule twice, ultimately a popular referendum on anti-corruption measures is being discussed. Could this be a strong sign for the rule of law against the backdrop of corruption?

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‘We Don’t Need No Constitution’ – On a Sad EU Membership Anniversary in Romania

These are troubled constitutional times in Romania. The newly elected government led by the corruption-ridden PSD party is pushing for legislative changes to make corruption offences virtually unpunishable by means of dubious Emergency Ordinances. A pending appeal before the Constitutional Court seeks to have legal provisions which prohibit persons with criminal convictions to occupy public positions in the Government declared unconstitutional. These attempts are met with resistance by the President who calls for an anti-corruption referendum.

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Same-sex marriage before the courts and before the people: the story of a tumultuous year for LGBT rights in Romania

This article will briefly recount a particularly agitated year for LGBT rights in Romania, marked by a highly contentious campaign to amend the constitutional definition of marriage through a referendum, as well as the first referral to the Court of Justice of the European Union by the Constitutional Court, in a freedom of movement case involving a married mixed nationality same-sex couple.

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Menschenwürde schlägt Anerkennungsgrundsatz

Europa fußt auf Vertrauen. Aber was, wenn manche europäischen Mitgliedsstaaten aufhören dieses Vertrauen zu verdienen? Ist die Vertrauenswürdigkeit ihrerseits Vertrauenssache? Angesichts der Mir-doch-egal-Haltung, die einige mittel- und osteuropäische Regierungen gegenüber dem Europarecht und den fundamentalen Verfassungsgrundsätzen Europas mittlerweile an den Tag legen, ist das keine theoretische Frage, sondern eine, von der Europas Zukunft abhängt. Heute hat der Europäische Gerichtshof sie auf eine Weise beantwortet, die mir einen Stein vom Herzen fallen lässt.

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A New Revolution? The Recent Governmental Crisis in Romania

As of November 2015, Romania faces its most important social, political and constitutional crisis in the last quarter-century. If the 1989 Revolution signified a break with a totalitarian communist regime, the widespread street protests of 2015, which led to the fall of the Government, gave a new message: global dissatisfaction towards the whole political class and institutions marked by serious inefficiency and corruption. The Government’s resignation led to an important constitutional crisis: one year before general elections, the country needed a new Government, but there was no clear political majority in Parliament to form one. In these circumstances, the President of Romania, Klaus Iohannis, has tried a new approach, calling on social movements and appointing a non-political "techocratic" government. Time will tell if the decisions taken were right for Romanian democracy.

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Kampf gegen Korruption in Rumänien: Das Verfassungsgericht verhindert eine Katastrophe

Die EU-Kommission hat gestern ihren 13. Fortschrittsbericht unter dem Kooperations- und Kontrollverfahren für Rumänien veröffentlicht. Sowohl Rumänien als auch Bulgarien werden seit 2007 von der EU-Kommission überwacht, die dabei hilft, rechtsstaatliche Reformen umzusetzen. Der Bericht betont die Sorgen der Kommission über die bedrohte Unabhängigkeit der Justiz und lobt den Verfassungsgerichtshof dafür, das Desaster einer „übereilten und intransparenten Änderung des Strafgesetzbuchs im Dezember 2013“ verhindert zu haben.The EU Commission published yesterday its 13th progress report under the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM) for Romania. Both Romania and Bulgaria have been subjected to monitoring by the EU Commission since 2007, which assisted the countries in their rule of law reforms. The report stressed the EU Commission’s concerns about threats to the independence of justice and praised the Constitutional Court for preventing the disaster of the “rushed and untransparent amendment of the Criminal Code in December 2013.”

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The Idea of Democracy Protection in the EU Revisited

Im Umgang mit Mitgliedsstaaten, in denen Demokratie und Rechtsstaatlichkeit ins Rutschen kommen, zeigen sich EU-Kommission und EU-Parlament weniger hilflos und unentschlossen, als manche befürchtet hatten. Doch reicht solch punktueller Druck aus? Jan-Werner Müller berichtet über die jüngsten Entwicklungen in Brüssel und antwortet zum Abschluss des Verfassungsblogs-Symposiums "Ungarn – was tun?" auf die Kritiker seines Vorschlags, als unabhängige Instanz eine "Kopenhagen-Kommission" einzurichten.

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