Prime Minister Viorica Dancila said on Wednesday that it is inappropriate for the first Vice-President of the European Commission Frans Timmermans to send a new letter to Romania two weeks before the elections to the European Parliament, according to Agerpres.
"I have not yet answered Mr Frans Timmermans, but to me there is disappointment. It is for the first time - and in nine years that I was a MEP in Brussels I saw many European commissions - but I find it politicking, and, given that we are two weeks ahead of the European elections, I find it inappropriate for him to send such a letter to the Romanian Government. I will explain why I made this statement. The Romanian government has not made any decision on justice yet, so the Romanian government cannot be rebuked for having made a decision on what it is being reproached of in the letter. Secondly, the Romanian Parliament is the law-making body; it is elected by the citizens' vote, it is the right of the Romanian Parliament to legislate and legislating is what it has done; asking the government to step in for laws Parliament has made is impossible because we know that we have to have the separation of powers. We are the executive power, we cannot intervene for the legislation made by Parliament," Dancila said on a visit to Prahova County.
She added that she finds the threat with Article 7 a dangerous thing.
"He is talking about lifting the Co-operation and Verification Mechanism (CVM). Yes, I know that if Article 7 gets activated, there can be no CVM, but in his letter Mr Frans Timmermans is also talking about a mechanism that will apply to Romania. We have had no prior talks about such mechanism in the European Parliament; I guess that the group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats (ALDE) has come up with a proposal, a precise criteria-based mechanism that applies to all member states. We were just talking about double standard and we see that it is trying to be applied again. I will answer Mr Vice-President Timmermans and I will ask that my country and Romanians in this country be treated fairly and respected as other EU citizens. I find his to be an unfair approach. The Co-operation and Verification Mechanism only applies to Romania and Bulgaria. Let us not forget that Croatia joined the EU after Romania, but there is no such mechanism for it. In order for us to have a strong and united Europe that we all want, because we are pro-European, we have to make citizens from all the member states and Romania confident that they are treated fairly and equally," said Dancila.
The European Commission confirmed on Monday that Timmermans sent a new letter to Romania voicing concern about the recent developments in the rule of law in Romania. The letter is addressed to President Klaus Iohannis, Senate Chairman Calin Popescu-Tariceanu, Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies Liviu Dragnea, and Prime Minister Viorica Dancila.