Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Intervention for Romania,
January 23, 2013
The United States warmly welcomes H.E. Mr. Bogdan Aureascu, Secretary of State and Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Romanian delegation.
We commend Romania’s overall track record on protecting human rights.
However, we are concerned that discrimination and violence against members of Roma and LGBT communities as well as their advocates are still common in Romania and often go unreported. Reports of unjustified use of deadly force by police and gendarmes against these populations are particularly disturbing.
We remain concerned about threats to the independence of the judiciary and institutions fighting corruption. Although there has been some progress in the implementation of newly passed legal codes, we remain concerned over continued judicial inefficiency, inconsistent jurisprudence and lengthy court proceedings.
Similarly disconcerting is the halting pace of communal and personal property restitution to Holocaust and Communist era victims, in part due to a restitution agency mired in corruption and controversy. We are further concerned by reports of Holocaust denial in public educational materials and school textbooks promoting religious intolerance.
Bearing in mind these concerns, the United States makes the following recommendations:
1. Implement the government’s National Roma Strategy with appropriate funding to improve education, housing, and employment opportunities for Roma citizens;
2. Appoint accomplished, independent prosecutors to lead the Prosecutor General and National Anti-Corruption Directorate offices, ensuring they remain free from political interference;
3. Include accurate Holocaust information in all public school lesson plans and promptly submit responsive, non-discriminatory legislation to Parliament for property restitution seekers as mandated by the European Court of Human Rights decision from January 2011.