Romania remembers 24 years since 1989 Revolution – disappointment and hope

The National Defence Ministry organized military ceremonies at the Bucharest-based monuments to the Hero Martyrs who died for the victory of the December 1989 Revolution, the institution said in a release, quoted by Agerpres. The ceremonies were held at the Revolution Heroes Cemetery, at Coltea Hospital roadside cross, in University Square, at Dalles Hall and Romana Square. Similar remembrance events took place on Sunday at the Monument for the Honour of the Revolution Heroes, Revolution Square, the Romanian Broadcasting Company headquarters, the Romanian Television premises and the Monument of the Heroes who Died at the Revolution on Timisoara Bvld.

In central Cluj-Napoca, 24 years since the December 1989 Revolution that toppled the communist regime, the city’s revolutionaries declared themselves disappointed with what has happened in Romania and some even said they regret having taken part in the events more than two decades ago. The Association for the Revolution Truth chairman Aurel Coltor said that, while the Romanian society has gained essential freedoms from the Revolution, nevertheless many problems still remain, giving the people reason for dissatisfaction. ‘And this is all because of the politicians. Everything has been politicized. If justice had not been politicized, today we would have been very well by the side of the peoples of Europe,’ Coltor said after a wreath-laying ceremony at the monument called The Shot Posts built in the memory of the Cluj-Napoca locals who were killed in the Revolution.
On the other hand, the revolutionaries who attended the wreath-laying ceremonies in memory of the victims of the 1989 Revolution, organized on Saturday in Bucharest, were holding banners reading “Ask Iliescu who hijacked the Revolution.” They also called for “the removal from office of the politicians who came to power after ‘89,” according to Mediafax.
Antonescu: We are what we are now because some of us had the courage to hope
The date of December 22 has a special significance for Romania’s history, representing a moment in which Romanians ‘piously and gratefully remember the martyrs of the fight against the communist totalitarian regime,’ Senate President, Liberal Crin Antonescu said. ‘This day is the symbol of the Revolution triumph over the communist regime and the come into view of the first centres of power that brought Romanian back on the line of its democratic and parliamentary traditions. In December 1989, the gates to freedom were widely opened and since then important steps were made, significant stages were crossed, which solidly and irreversibly anchored Romania on its democratic and European course,’ Antonescu said, according to a press release remitted to Agerpres on Sunday.  He added that, after 24 years since the Revolution, ‘we are not allowed and we do not have the right to forget them, regardless of the difficulties of the present or the challenges of the future,’ those who fought in December 1989 against the communist regime.

The number of the people owning a revolutionary certificate, following the December 1989 events, is put at 22,000-23,000, but 16,000 of them, more precisely those from the “remarkable fighters” category, will not be given the monthly benefits based on this certificate in 2014 either. At present, such benefits are granted to the fighters who were injured or arrested during the 1989 Revolution, as well as to the descendants of the hero martyrs, i.e. the widower, the parents of the person who died and each child until reaches the age of consent or finishes the studies, but not above 26 years old, regardless of his/her provider. The monthly amount is calculated by applying some rates upon the medium gross salary, which varies depending upon the category in which it is included. Gheorghe Grosu, advisor to the State Secretariat for Revolutionaries’ Issues said that the 1.1 index of the average gross salary means RON 2,012, minus contributions, with the net value of the benefits being RON 1,909.

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