MINELRES: Romania: Ethnic Minorities News no. 24 (152)

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Fri Jul 1 17:51:49 2005


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Divers Bulletin no. 24 (152) / June 27, 2005

News
UDMR: POSITIVE ACCOUNT AS WELL AS DISSATISFACTIONS AFTER SIX MONTHS IN
THE GOVERNMENT
ROMANIA TO ESTABLISH A NATIONAL INSTITUTE TO STUDY THE HOLOCAUST 
MINORITIES’ LAW AMENDED AT THE JURIDICAL COMMISSION IN THE SENATE
FINE ANNULLED FOR THE BROADCAST OF “TRIANON” DOCUMENTARY
ROMANIAN JEWS DEFEND KING MIHAI AGAINST HIS NEPHEW, PRINCE PAUL
--------------------------------------------------------------

News

UDMR: POSITIVE ACCOUNT AS WELL AS DISSATISFACTIONS AFTER SIX MONTHS IN
THE GOVERNMENT

TIRGU-MURES – Council of Union Representatives (CRU), Democratic Union
of ethnic Hungarians in Romania (UDMR’s) mini-Parliament met at the end
of last week, at Tirgu Mures to make the account of the six months spent
since the Union was involved in the new governing. Though most of CRU
members agreed that UDMR had the most favorable political stand since
the 1989 Revolution, critics still existed. They were mainly directed
against the coalition partners whom UDMR drew the attention they should
more carefully consider the problems of Transylvania and of the ethnic
Hungarian minority. UDMR chairman Marko Bela criticized on Saturday,
June 18, towards the representatives of the Council of Union
Representatives (CRU), the attitude of the partners with the coalition
connected with developing the infrastructure, especially that of
Transylvania.
On the other hand, UDMR leader rejected the opinion according to which
the votes of the Union in changing the chairmen of the Chambers of
Parliament is a currency to support the law draft on the national
minorities or the establishment of Transylvania highway.
Referring to the draft on the minorities’ law, Marko Bela stated this
law draft that creates the instruments of the cultural autonomy for the
ethnic Hungarian community is unfortunately rejected by the Romanian
ultranationalists as well as by some of the representatives of the
ethnic Hungarian community and he is confident the first "will do
everything to prevent its enactment". 
Author: DIVERS


ROMANIA TO ESTABLISH A NATIONAL INSTITUTE TO STUDY THE HOLOCAUST 

BUCHAREST – Ministry of Culture and Cults (MCC) drew up a Government
Decision draft on establishing the National Institute to Study the
Holocaust, as a specialty department investigating and analyzing the
phenomenon of the Holocaust in Romania, informs the site of the
ministry.
According to the draft, the institute’s activity object is to gather,
archive, research and publish the documents regarding the Holocaust
during the Second World War and to solve the scientific problems as well
as educational activities regarding the Holocaust. The establishment of
a specialized institution studying the Holocaust is grounded in the
normative act as "an undertaking" of the phenomenon "by the entire
humanity".
The draft stipulates the institute is led by a chairman, an executive
director and a scientific director designated on five years, through
Premier’s decision. The maximum number of positions of the institute is
of 40, 20 of which are scientific researchers.
The draft also stipulates that besides the Institute it also functions:
the Scientific Council and the Honorific Council. The Scientific College
is a specialty scientific consultative department made up by 31
important figures recognized in the field of studying the Holocaust. The
members of the Scientific Council are designated by the chairman of the
Institute and are not employed. The Honorific Council is made up of
important figures of the internal and international life with merits in
the field of studying the Holocaust. 
Author: DIVERS


MINORITIES’ LAW AMENDED AT THE JURIDICAL COMMISSION IN THE SENATE

BUCHAREST – Senators in the Juridical Commission started on Tuesday,
June 21, the debates at the minorities’ law, settling – at the proposal
of the Conservatory Party, supported by PSD and PRM – the national
minorities are constitutive factors of "the Romanian population", and
not of "the Romanian state", as the Government text initially
stipulated.
The amendment to change the article on this issue belonged to the
conservatory senator Gavrila Vasilescu, but was passed subsequent to the
vote of PSD and PRM representatives in the commission. 
The jurist senators have managed to discuss only four articles of the
law, each with several amendments, most of which belong to PRM and
especially to Gheorghe Funar.
Secretary of state Marko Attila, chairman of the Department for
Inter-ethnic Relations stated though the members of the commission
presented 223 amendments, the senators finally passed the initial text
submitted by the Government. The two-three technical changes included in
the project do not change either the article or the essence of the law.
The project will be subsequently debated in the Juridical, Discipline
and Immunity Commission of the Senate. 
Author: DIVERS


FINE ANNULLED FOR THE BROADCAST OF “TRIANON” DOCUMENTARY

MIERCUREA-CIUC – Miercurea Ciuc Courthouse decided on Tuesday, June 21,
to annul the fine of ROL100 mn the Police gave a person that organized
in the locality the broadcast of ''Trianon'' documentary.
Peter Lukacs, chairman of the ethnic Hungarian Civic Union in Ciceu was
fined in February with ROL100 mn for having organized the broadcast of
''Trianon'' film, without a classification certificate issued by the
National Center of Cinematography. He appealed the minute three months
since the magistrates in Miercurea-Ciuc ordered the annulment of the
fine. 
Peter Lukacs stated the judicial decision is normal and he has never
admitted to be guilty, being only a matter of ''free access to
information''. 
The broadcast of ''Trianon'' documentary in some localities in Romania
at the beginning of next year arose controversies among the public
opinion. The film of 220 minutes shot by the Hungarian director Koltay
Gabor presents the political conjecture after the First World War, which
led to the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
Author: DIVERS


ROMANIAN JEWS DEFEND KING MIHAI AGAINST HIS NEPHEW, PRINCE PAUL

JERUSALEM - Romanian Jews rushed to defend former King Mihai denyng
accusations against him brought by Prince Paul, reported in Monday's
Jerusalem Post.
The newspaper published several comments in favor of the former king.
Apart from the efforts of the prince to help Romanian Jews recover or be
compensated for property that was looted from them from 1940-1944,
several sources rejected Paul's charges that the king was a willing
collaborator of Romania's pro-German military dictator, Ion Antonescu.
"During the four years there was a Nazi state, the Jews [of Romania]
were deported, their properties were confiscated, they were not allowed
to be pharmacists or doctors, they had to wear the yellow star and
350,000 died," Prince Paul said on Sunday. "And who is responsible?
Mihai..."
But Jean Ancel, an expert on Romanian history and Romanian Jewry who
lives in Jerusalem, stressed that Mihai's legacy was "highly
complicated." "King Mihai had no real powers; the Antonescu regime only
needed him as a symbol... The king went through a fascist period, but...
he wasn't culpable for [Antonescu's] actions."
Regarding documents presented by Paul showing his uncle's authorization
of anti-Semitic laws, Ancel said, "The king's signature was customary –
he didn't personally write the laws. He could have refused to sign the
laws, though... And in fact, the royal family never protested the
anti-Semitism of Antonescu's government."
"Mihai was not the one who decided to enter the war on the side of the
Nazis [in 1940], but he was the one who decided to exit the alliance
with the Nazis at the end of the war... as early as 1943, in fact, he
did make public statements showing his opposition to the alliance," he
told Jerusalem Post.
Romanian Jewish scholar Prof. Michael Shafir of Cluj wrote to the Post
that Prince Paul's accusations were inaccurate. "If it were not for King
Mihai," Shafir wrote, "I and my family would be dead. It is only thanks
to his courageous step of 23 August 1944" - deposing Antonescu and
joining the Allies - "that the fate of Romanian Jewry was not the same
as that of Hungarian Jewry, for instance." 
Members of certain Jewish organizations approached by the prince and his
wife on Sunday expressed a reticence to take up the issue, concerned
that Jewish restitution claims could be merely a sideshow in the heated,
decades-long battle within Romania's royal family over the right to the
crown. The Post reported on Monday that Paul's statements were allegedly
meant to prevent the former king from receiving compensations worth 30
million dollars for the royal family's assets confiscated by the
Communists.
Meanwhile, Prince Paul and Princess Lia brought their case to the
Israeli Parliament (Knesset) on Monday, meeting several MPs. After an
unplanned meeting with Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom, a representative
of the prince told the Post, Shalom promised to raise the issue with
Romanian Foreign Minister Mihai Razvan Ungureanu, who is scheduled to
visit Israel in two weeks, the Jerusalem Post said.
Author: DIVERS

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