Minister-delegate Stoenescu visits Romanians detained in Malaysia

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Minister-Delegate for Relations with Romanians Abroad Dan Stoenescu (photo), who was on a working visit to Malaysia this weekend, visited on this occasion the four Romanians detained in this Asian country for drug trafficking.

“The minister-delegate told the inmates that the Romanian state carefully monitors their situation and that the authorities in Bucharest are making efforts for each separate case,” the Foreign Ministry said in release to Agerpres on Monday.

The Romanian nationals are in good health, considering the difficult climate conditions in the region, the release informs.

Stoenescu visited two Romanians detained in the Sungai Buloh Prison – Selangor state, who are charged with drug trafficking and whose trials are still underway; one Romanian sentenced to death, in the Johor prison; and one Romanian sentenced to eight years in jail and 10 rattan strokes in the Kajang, Selangor state detention centre.

The minister-delegate also met with Malay lawyer Datuk Nyananthan Sivananthan, counselor of the four Romanians, to learn details about the trials and ongoing legal proceedings.

“The Romanian official appreciated the open and constructive attitude of the Malaysian authorities towards the start of negotiations on the three treaties that should regulate particular aspects of judicial cooperation in criminal matters: judicial assistance, extradition and the transfer of sentenced persons”, reads the release.

During the meeting with the Romanian sentenced to death, the minister-delegate told him that – acting as special envoy of President Klaus Iohannis and Prime Minister Dacian Ciolos – he had referred to the Malaysian authorities the letters of the two top Romanian officials who call for leniency in his case.

“The global abolition of the death penalty is an important objective for Romania, which promotes it in its capacity of EU member state in the working group on the abolition of capital punishment, and within the United Nations. On 18 December 2014 the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution for a moratorium on the death penalty. Romania is one of the states to have supported this initiative and our efforts at international level are necessary steps in this direction, the more so as Romanian citizens are involved, “the official added.

According to the cited source, the Foreign Ministry mainly seeks to prevent the death penalty for the four Romanians arrested in Malaysia.