Dragnea: PSD backs prepaid phone cards law. We will go to Cotroceni if invited

PSD President Liviu Dragnea gave assurances on Thursday that the PSD delegation will go to the Presidential Palace for a debate on the national security topic, if President Klaus Iohannis invites the parties to take part in consultations.

“From what I’ve understood, the President’s desire to invite parties at consultations on this legislative package is a certainty. PSD will definitely go, with the observation that this meeting and this talk should have taken place earlier on. It’s a very important discussion for the Romanian state and for national security and personal safety in Romania. PSD has very clearly defined what it stands by. On the one hand, the Romanian state’s investigative capability, the state institutions’ capability to ensure the protection of persons, of Romanian citizens, against terrorism and other actions of this type, should not be dented. On the other hand, the citizens’ fundamental rights should not be impinged upon,” Liviu Dragnea stated at a press conference that followed PSD’s National Standing Bureau meeting, when asked whether President Klaus Iohannis invited him to attend the consultations on the national security laws.

Liviu Dragnea said that there is information according to which the President will summon the parties to consultations on the national security laws.

“Before coming here, I asked Mr. Georgian Pop (Chairman of the SRI parliamentary commission – editor’s note), who is an informed person, and he told me that it seems this meeting will indeed take place. If officially confirmed, PSD will go and will go very well prepared; it won’t go just to present an opinion, to talk for the sake of talking, it will go with very well structured proposals,” Dragnea added.

Asked whether PSD will back a prepaid phone cards law, Dragnea answered affirmatively. “We support any legislative act and we will come up with proposals to complement the legislative acts in force, in order for them to respect these principles. (…) We do not have information on prepaid phone cards from Romania being used by terrorists in other countries, we do not have this information. We are a civilian party that is not in power and has no access to this kind of information,” the PSD President stated.

Dragnea added that in case Parliament will not adopt the whole package of national security laws then “we have a problem.”

“If we are not able to do this it means we have a problem. I believe that yes, since I hope we – the parliamentary parties, the Presidency, the Government and other institutions – would reach a common point of view on these actions, we have no reason not to adopt it. It’s important, you can’t play here. From what I know, those who seek to carry out cyber attacks or attacks of a different nature are not waiting until the Romanian Parliament wakes up. We are obligated to do this,” the PSD leader concluded.


President Iohannis calls political parties for consultations non security legislation


President Klaus Iohannis decided to have consultations with all the political parties on security legislation. He made the announcement last Thursday in Washington saying that a public consultation on the matter is very important.

“Security laws are specialized, thus solutions are not easy to find when it comes to cyber security and prepaid cards, unless experts are consulted,” Iohannis asserted. “I think these consultations are an important step, because ultimately the Parliament – where parties are represented – must vote these laws; but a public consultation is equally important, and I think that, if things keep this awareness pace that I like, then we will have political consultations practically at the same time with a wide debate throughout the society,” Iohannis declared on Thursday in Washington.

According to the head of state, citizens expect legislation to guarantee their fundamental rights and freedoms, not just their security.

“If politicians back in the country expect these consultations, it means they have understood my message. I want to reassure everybody that I’ll have consultations with all the political parties over the next weeks; we will also gather the experts who came up with some ideas in this field, and I hope we will manage to start within the shortest delays a process of modernization and update of the whole legislation,” Iohannis added.

“I am very glad about the politicians starting to mobilize after my speech on the SRI (Romanian Intelligence Service) report. I have mentioned on that occasion the legislation concerning national security, particularly the specific legislation – for instance that related to the prepaid [mobile phone] cards, to cyber security, and so on; and I have underlined there that it’s very important to have a modernized, updated legislation, and that this must be done through a political consensus, otherwise the legislation would lack the necessary stability,” the President said.

His speech, he said, “was not an appeal to immediate consultation, but rather making the politicians aware.

In fact, Senator Daniel Savu was announcing as early as last Wednesday that President Klaus Iohannis will call on the leaders of parliamentary parties to take part in consultations in order to convince them to adopt urgently the law on prepaid phone cards and the cybersecurity law.


Basescu: Ciolos has fallen into the intelligence services’ trap. They are interested in Gov’t coming up with a law or ordinance on this issue


Former president Basescu stated that Premier Dacian Ciolos “fell into a trap” when he talked about the fact that some prepaid phone cards from Romania were allegedly used to carry out attacks in Europe, the intelligence services being interested in the Government coming up with a law or ordinance on this issue.

The former president censured the Prime Minister’s statement according to which Romanian prepaid phone cards were used in attacks in the EU.

“I believe these laws should not be passed without a large public consultation. If we are talking about the Premier’s unfortunate statement, being unaccustomed to the state apparatus, he fell into a trap. I’m convinced he did not dream at night that prepaid cards were used to prepare terrorist attacks. He received a report. (…) Of course this [information] was slipped in there to prompt the Premier to pass, overnight, a law or emergency ordinance on prepaid cards,” Basescu claimed.

He stated that if he were Ciolos he would ask the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI) in what attacks were the prepaid card used and whether they notified partner intelligence services about this.

Nevertheless, the PMP leader declared himself a backer of the idea of identifying those purchasing prepaid phone cards, but he emphasised that prosecutors should be prevented from leaking private conversations.

“I believe it is childish. All of us who have subscriptions are perfectly identifiable. Why should it bother me if the [prepaid phone] card I buy from the corner shop were to be identifiable too? It doesn’t bother me! In fact, nobody is hitting the nail on the head. We don’t want to see prosecutors leaking conversations with the wife, with the mistress, with a friend. Oh, if we’re conspiring to commit fraud, include it in the case file. But what they did to Nichita is a lesson on how our authorities see fit to use wiretappings… They offered all the juicy conversations he had with his mistress. So that law should also set a general rule on not using private conversations in criminal case files just to compromise someone,” Traian Basescu said.

“On the other hand, the same law should make it very clear for the prosecutor, the SRI officer or the one who is making the recording that (…) publishing wiretapping transcripts that do not concern acts of corruption, that are private conversations, means jail for him,” the former head of state added.

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