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Yearbook 2006

Romania. In February, Romania's former Prime Minister Adrian Nastase was cleared of corruption charges. He denied the accusations, saying that the government was chasing political opponents to show the EU that it meets the main requirement to become a member of the Union, namely to tackle corruption.

2006 Romania

In the spring, Romania received praise from the EU just for its increased anti-corruption efforts. A number of criminal investigations were underway against politicians, lawyers and officials.

In June, the EU reintroduced a previous import ban on poultry from Romania due to a second epidemic of bird flu, which has spread to several villages and also the capital Bucharest. About a million animals had been slaughtered.

According to CountryAAH, President Traian Băsescu was forced in August to refute allegations that he worked for the former security service Securitate. Several politicians were identified as former co-workers since Securitate's archive was opened. Băsescu said he had never signed an agreement with Securitate, but as a sea captain he had written routine "travel reports" for his superiors. He also defended the decision to open the archives, saying that Romania could not enter the EU without doing so.

In September, the European Commission declared that Romania and Bulgaria were ready to be accepted as members of the EU on 1 January 2007. However, there were a number of requirements that needed to be met gradually. Among other things, both countries must report once a year on the fight against corruption. However, the disappointment became great in both Romania and Bulgaria when the UK and Ireland announced that guest workers from both countries would not have free access to the labor market after EU entry.

In November, the former head of government Nastase was indicted for bribery, extortion and abuse of power. The prosecution was linked to an apartment building in Bucharest. Nastase denied the charges.

At the end of the year, the prosecutor's office decided to start criminal investigations also against the outgoing finance minister and communications minister, who were suspected of corruption in connection with the privatization in Romania.

Ahead of the New Year's EU accession, the government lost its majority in Parliament when the small Conservative party left the coalition.

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