The Council of Europe’s Secretary General Thorbjorn Jagland called on Romania to wait for the Venice Commission’s opinion, and to take it into account, before any further steps are taken to amend the Criminal Code and Criminal Procedure Code.
“This reform risks contradicting Romania’s international obligations, notably under the Council of Europe Criminal Law Convention on Corruption, as identified by the recent ad hoc report of the Group of States against Corruption (GRECO). As a member state of our organization, Romania is duty-bound to uphold the rule of law,” reads the Secretary General’s statement.
On June 28, the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly requested the Venice Commission’s opinion.
“Together with the recommendations of GRECO, this should help find the best possible solution to address the issues raised by the draft amendments, in line with European standards and with Romania’s European commitments.”
The Council of Europe says it will continue to pay close attention to the on-going developments in Romania and is ready to provide further expertise if needed.
Romania’s Parliament adopted this week several controversial changes to the Criminal Code, partly decriminalizing abuse of office. Changes to the Criminal Procedure Code were also adopted at the end of June.
The Venice Commission is also expected to issue an opinion on the three justice laws the Romanian Parliament adopted at the end of 2017, which haven’t been enforced yet.
(photo source: Council of Europe on Facebook)