Former RO president denies comments on ruling party in French media, journalist stands by report

Former Romanian president Ion Iliescu has denied comments concerning the ruling Social Democrat Party (PSD) in an interview with French newspaper Le Figaro. Iliescu is the honorary president of PSD. The French journalist who interviewed Iliescu says he has the recording and will make it public, reported.

“It is a difficult, confusing period for the party, which is undergoing its most serious crisis,” Iliescu said, according to Le Figaro. The former president also said that the personal position of party leader Liviu Dragnea “with his legal problems, created internal fractures” in the party, the French newspaper wrote in an article titled Romania, the country of one party (La Roumanie, pays d’un seul parti).

Iliescu also argued that in today’s Romania “there is no alternative, no other force capable of answering society’s needs” besides PSD.

However, the former president wrote on his blog that the comments are not real.

“I have read with surprise mixed with disgust a sort of a compilation about PSD and the political situation in Romania, published in Le Figaro. Surprise, because Le Figaro has always been a solid newspaper, which does quality journalism. Disgust, because I am quoted with things I have never said, not to Le Figaro, not to anyone else,” Iliescu wrote.

The former president, the first Romania had after the 1989 Revolution, said everyone is free to think whatever they like about PSD, the political situation in Romania, or the post-Revolution history.

“But I cannot accept to be involved in absurd political fights for power, without any stake for the PSD or for Romania. The reality presented in the article is cartoonish, and the statements that are attributed to me are part of this political fight. It is not my intention to take part in this. PSD is a mature and responsible party, which will solve its problems according to its statute and the laws of the country. Lately, I have chosen to be minimally involved in the political life in PSD and in Romania. And when I will have something to say to PSD I will do it directly, without the mediation of the foreign or Romanian press,” he said.

Journalist Paul Cozighian, who did the interview, told Digi24 that he finds it “incredible” that the former president denied the statements. “I was impressed with the quality of his answers and with his memory,” he said, wondering if the former president is actually the author of the blog entry denying the statements.

(Photo: Agência Brasil/ Wikipedia)

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