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October 24, 2021

President asks Forensic Institute to check controversial footage

President Traian Basescu on Monday morning asked the National Forensic Expertise Institute to check the footage showing him allegedly hitting a child during a 2004 election rally, so as to establish whether the footage was tampered with, according to a press release from the presidential administration.

The footage was published by daily ‘Gardianul’ last week and taken over by all media channels. Experts hired by the Democrat Liberal Party insisted that the footage had been corrupted so as to show the president hitting a child.

Basescu said he had no recollection of such an event and this is why he asked specialists to analyse the footage and issue an official position. He insisted that he never hit a child in his life and said “this dirty campaign has one too far.” The president also said he was going to sue ‘Gardianul’ and businessman Dinu Patriciu, the first to accuse him of having hit a child, a day before the footage surfaced.

In a show on OTV on Monday evening, the president said the tape was forged abroad, because the people who did this were afraid this would be leaked to the public if it had been done in Romania. He added that he expects the Forensics Institute’s results in two to three days.

On the other hand, acting PM and Democrat Liberal leader Emil Boc on Monday denied rumours that the footage had been released by someone from the PDL. “The Democrat Liberal Party categorically denies what ‘Gardianul’ editor in chief Alecu Racoviceanu said, that (…) the forged footage comes from” the ranks of the party, Boc said in a press release. He added that this information is a “gross manipulation” meant to cover the newspaper’s incompetence, as they released the footage without even checking whether it was real.

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