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May 6, 2021

World anti-communist figures demand communist crimes probe go on

Over 100 leading anti-communist figures of Europe and elsewhere in the world demanded Prime Minister Emil Boc allow the Communist Crimes Investigation Institute (ICCR) to continue its probe of communist regime’s atrocities in Romania, Realitatea TV reported. The anti-communist militants met in Prague last week, at the international Crimes of the Communist Regimes conference, where they voiced concern for Romanian authorities’ recent measure to change the missions of the ICCR and the Romanian Exile Memory Institute, which were recently merged, so as to eliminate positions of communist crime investigators. Another measure taken by the authorities further prevents people from filing criminal complaints against communist crime suspects.

Conference participants also voiced concern over attempts to hamper the activity of the Czech Republic’s Institute for the Study of Totalitarian Regimes.

“We express our concern over recent events in the Czech Republic and Romania, which want to reduce the activity of institutions meant to probe and expose communist crimes,” conference participants said in a joint resolution.

The document was signed, among others, by the head of the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly’s political affairs committee, Goran Lindblad, ex communist dissident and currently Latvian MEP Sandra Kalniete, Romania’s ex dissident Laszlo Tokes, a former political convict in China, Harry Wu, ex Lithuanian President Vytautas Landsbergis, and several other leading former dissidents from ex-Soviet countries.

The resolution came as PM Emil Boc over the weekend dismissed ICCR head Marius Oprea, in spite of an intense campaign driven by several NGOs and other prominent figures to maintain the historian on the job. The decision was made after several months in which Oprea accused the government of wanting to replace him with another historian, Vladimir Tismaneanu, simply because he is member of the opposition Liberal Party. Numerous NGOs and personalities, including Nobel literature prize winner and ex communist dissident Herta Muller and former President Emil Constantinescu voiced support for Oprea in the last few weeks.

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