Romania: Ex-President Iliescu Indicted Over 1990 Violence


By Ana Maria Luca

Military prosecutors of the Romanian Supreme Court on Friday indicted former president Ion Iliescu and other former senior officials with crimes against humanity for their role in the violence in 1990 that left at least four dead and over 700 wounded in Bucharest.

Former Prime Minister Petre Roman, former Deputy Prime Minister Gelu Voican Voiculescu and the former head of Romanian Intelligence Service Virgil Măgureanu are also among those indicted for the violent crackdown on opposition protesters in Bucharest’s University Square on June 13-15, 1990.

Four people were killed, three others were shot and wounded, and over 1,000 were beaten and detained in one of the most violent episodes in Romania’s recent history, when between 10,000 and 20,000 miners from the Jiu Valley marched into Bucharest and attacked the opposition protesters.

Several institutions, including the Ministry of Interior, the headquarters of the Romanian Intelligence Service, SRI, as well as the public television, TVR, were attacked and vandalized. All broadcasts were cancelled.

“Between June 11-15, 1990, the accused decided, organized and coordinated a general and systematic attack against the civilian populations, respectively against protesters in Bucharest University Square as well as against citizens of the capital.

“They also involved the security forces of the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Defence as well as over 10,000 miners and other workers from several regions,” prosecutor Marian Lazar said, announcing the indictments.

The officials were first called for questioning as suspects on December 21, 2015, after the investigation was re-launched. Charges had been dropped against all suspects in 2009.

The investigation had dragged for almost 27 years and Romania had to pay damages after being ruled against in several cases at the European Court for Human Rights, ECHR.
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