Tuesday, July 24, 2012

ECPM: Urgent Call to Romanian Politicians

Update 26 July, 2012 - The European Christian Political Movement (ECPM) expresses its concern regarding the current political situation in Romania. The present crisis shows, in the view of ECPM, that there are some fundamental problems in the Romanian political landscape. Although the road towards EU integration brought Romania many positive changes, different governments have still not succeeded to achieve the necessary reforms in order to protect the separation of powers, to guarantee the Rule of Law and to create a democratic culture representing the Romanian people in its entirety.

We understand all calls for deeper reform and as well as those who expressed their worries regarding the rapid institutional changes of the last few weeks. These institutional changes reveal, in our opinion, the existence of an underlying need for stronger institutions that must become independent from political party influences.

Recent developments are worrying and show the need for deeper reform and stronger fundamental institutions. Via urgent ordinances and change of directors, the current system permitted the politicization and limitation of fundamental institutions in their (independent) power. Moreover, the fact that events unfolded rapidly is in our opinion a clear indication of the weakness of institutions which have been politicized in some form by most previous Romanian governments.

At this moment specific concerns are raised regarding the politicization of the National Ombudsman, the limiting of the authority of the Romanian Constitutional Court, the transfer of the National State Gazette under the direct responsibility of the Government and the change of the directors of the Romanian National television and radio. These fundamental changes in the rule of law have been made by the Romanian Government without constructive political debates. Regardless of the intentions of the government, these developments put the rule of law in serious jeopardy. We hope all sides will understand that no one will be protected any more by these institutions and that successive governments may use them for any political means.

Since its beginning, ECPM has been involved in promoting Christian values in Romanian political life and society. In our vision, Christian values are not just personal values; they have meaning for the institutions as well. Honesty, integrity, respect for the rule of law and human dignity are all Christian values that need to be part of both European and Romanian national institutions in order for society to flourish.

We urgently call on the Romanian government and all those involved in the Romanian political process to leave this continuous struggle for power aside and to work in the interest of the Romanian society: to depoliticize the institutions, to create an effective system of checks and balances, to take measures that guarantee an independent juridical system and a free press and media.

We believe that only by making these necessary changes can Romania effectively battle against corruption and abuse of power in order to create a real democratic society. Therefore we also urge Romanian authorities to organize the upcoming referendum concerning the suspension of the Romanian president in a democratic, constitutional and honest manner insomuch as the vote will maximally reflect the will of the Romanian people. Additionally, we also reject any leaders’ attempt to employ any unjustified and undemocratic strain upon Romanian citizens towards nonparticipation in the referendum or pressuring people to vote in a certain way.

We challenge all involved in the Romanian political life to pursue the restoration of society as a common goal. We sincerely wish that service, humility, compassion and reconciliation will become the guiding principles for Romanian politics. This would not only generate trust in the Romanian institutions and authorities, but will also gain respect for the nation in Europe as well as bring about welfare for the Romanian people. Our hope is that Romania will grow in all ways imaginable in the years to come.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

The International Rome Office of the Dignitatis Humanae Institute officially inaugurated

On the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, the feast day of Rome, politicians, clergy and NGOs from across the world met in the Eternal City to discuss one of the most important issues of or time, with the rise of militant secularism, how do we affirm the ‘Role of Christians in the Public Square’? This event was followed by a reception to mark the official launch of the international Rome office of the Dignitatis Humanae Institute.

(Source: Dignitatis Humanae Institute)

The Global Charter of Conscience is official launched

On 20 June, the Global Charter of Conscience a declaration reaffirming and supporting Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (about “freedom of thought, conscience and religion”) was officially launched in the European Parliament, in an event hosted by Finnish MEP Sari Essayah. The growing tensions involving religion, worldview and ideology have become a massive global problem, an international group of leading academics and activists say to Europe and the world.  This firm and principled document aims to bring religious tolerance back to the centre of public debate with guidelines to discuss and resolve present problems in a constructive, rights-honouring manner. 

 (More information about the Charter you will find here)

European Parliament Resolution Condemns Forced Abortion in China

On the 5th of July, the European Parliament has  adopted a resolution strongly condemning forced abortions and sterilizations under China's One Child Policy, including the forced abortion at seven months of Feng Jianmei, which occurred last month in Shaanxi Province, China. 
Specifically, the resolution, 2012/2712 (RSP)  “strongly condemns the decision to force Ms Feng to have an abortion and condemns the practice of forced abortions and sterilizations globally, especially in the context of the one‑child policy.”  The resolution further states that “the EU has provided, and still provides, funds for organizations involved in family planning policies in China,” and “urges the Commission to ensure that its funding of projects does not breach” the European Parliament’s commitment against coercive population control. 
Find the text of the EP resolution here
(Source: Women's right Without Frontiers)