Monday, July 30th

Romanian prison trade unionists announce protest calendar

Trade unions of Romania’s prison personnel announced a protest calendar on Monday. They protest against what they call the „indolence and incompetence” of Justice Minister Tudorel Toader, and the government’s failure in solving their problems. Besides the dismissal of the minister, they demand better working conditions, an end to wage discrimination and a new status of prison police. Trade unionists announced a Japanese-style strike on August 10, and a rally on October 3. The European Court on Human Rights (CEDO) regularly condemns Romania for inadequate detention conditions and inhuman treatment of prisoners (violation of article 3 of the Convention) with overcrowding remaining an issue of serious concern. Prison staff in Romania are divided into three categories: officers, sub-officers, and administrative pesonnel. Although prison personnel are now under the authority of the Ministry of Justice, they have maintained their military rank.

Romania’s Justice Minister explains…

Existing 300 files of Romania’s anti-corruption watchdog, the DNA, involving magistrates under probe, may explain the opposition against opening of a new department within the Public Ministry, Justice Minister Tudorel Toader said in a statement on Monday. „Once the transfer is done, we will surely see what those files were all about. We didn’t know anything about it, and this could also explain the opposition to such transfer to the newly created body within the General Prosecutor’s Office”, Mr. Toader said. After months of legal turmoil, the former head of Romania’s National Anti-Corruption Directorate chief has been fired earlier this month. In office since 2013, Laura Codruţa Kövesi has gained international praise for her drive to fight graft in one of the EU’s most corrupt member states.

Romanian movies at International Film Festival in Jerusalem

Adina Pintilie’s controversial film ‘Touch Me Not’ will be released at the Jerusalem Cinematheque on Monday as part of the International Film Festival in the Israeli town of Jerusalem. Israeli and foreign moviegoers could watch the movie also on August 2 and 3. The festival also hosts another Romanian entry, „Infinite Football” directed by Corneliu Porumboiu. Its premiere at the festival is expected on July 31. Another Romanian entry, Ioana Uricaru’s first feature, „Lemonade”, is part of the „Debut” section. Pintilie’s „Touch Me Not” (Romanian: „Nu mă atinge-mă”) won the Golden Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival in 2018. „Touch Me Not” is an experiment between fiction and documentary, and addresses prejudices of people related to intimacy.

Alexandru Danga