More than 20,000 people took part in protests staged late on Wednesday in Bucharest, in downtown University Square, outside the Palace of Parliament and the Colectiv club, chanting slogans against the politicians and in memory of the victims killed in the club fire last Friday. It was the second consecutive night of massive protests in the Capital city sparked after the Colectiv club deadly fire that killed 32 and injured over 140 on October 30. Similar protests took place in many other cities where people took to the streets to express their solidarity with those marching in Bucharest. Taking part in the rally in Timisoara were around 5,000 people, according to unofficial estimates, and the protesters said they will return in the coming nights; 5,000 persons marched in protest in Iasi, 3,000 in Cluj-Napoca, 2,000 in Bacau, more than 1,000 in Alba Iulia, with the participants ending their protest outside the city mayor’s house; over 1,000 protesters were also in Buzau and Braila, while hundreds more staged rallies in Oradea, Targoviste, Ramnicu Valcea, Baia Mare, Tulcea and Suceava.
The protesters chanted slogans against the political class: “Down the mobster system”, “Parties messy all alike”, “Justice is nowhere, corruption’s everywhere”, “Down with Parliament”, “Criminal lawmakers, off to court!”.
They also had signs that read: “Technocrat government,” “We don’t want fails, but technocrats., “We want hospitals, not cathedrals,” “Come out if you care.”
Those who arrived in front of the Palace of Parliament have displayed a banner reading: “Robbed by rotation for 26 years,” “Romania’s gravediggers.”
Some protesters who climbed the Palace of Parliament fence have also sent a message from the diaspora, who, according to them, voices its support for the demonstrations.
The protesters have been handed flyers in which people are urged to apply on an online platform and make nominations and vote persons in various leading and administration positions. “It is in vain to remove the current rulers if we don’t find some better ones to replace them. Incompetent people mustn’t be allowed to reach power on our backs. Together we can find and support fair people, who deserve those positions. People who assume responsibilities in front of the people, not of political parties,” the flyers read.
Gendarmerie says not its duty to estimate rally attendance
The Bucharest Gendarmerie says it is not its duty to estimate the turnout of public rallies, in response to mass-media requests for estimates of the attendance of the rallies staged in Bucharest City.
“Under Law 550/ 2004 concerning the organisation and operation of the Romanian Gendarmerie, the institution has no duty to make public estimates of the turnouts at public rallies. The only estimates it makes are for operational purposes in order to build the public order lines adjusted for real occurrences. Under Law 60/ 1991 concerning public rallies, it is incumbent on stated organisers to provide estimates of attendance,” the Gendarmerie said in a press statement on Wednesday.
It also said that the Gendarmerie provides public order services to all the citizens who are peacefully protesting and in a constitutional framework, and it does so in a manner that is unbiased to all attendees.