Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Council of Europe mediates solution to end constitutional crisis in Moldova
The four party leaders in the governing “Alliance for European Integration” (AEI) announced that the government will hold a referendum to amend Article 78 of the Constitution (to allow for direct election of the President), dissolve Parliament and call for new elections. The referendum is expected to be held in the first half of September and new parliamentary elections are to be organised in Autumn after the Parliament’s dissolution in October.
Thiss solution was reached as the result of the lengthy mediation efforts by the Council of Europe and its Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland, after it became clear that a broad compromise between the governing Alliance and the opposition Communist Party (CPRM) was not possible.
“We have to follow the European path and I am grateful to the Secretary General who has helped us reach a solution to overcome this crisis,” said Acting President of Moldova Mihai Ghimpu.
Prime Minister Vlad Filat said: “It is important that we stand united and ensure the implementation of the solution reached today. This requires the full support of all parliamentarians of the Alliance. Without the help of the Council of Europe and the direct intervention of its Secretary General we would not have succeeded in bringing this crisis to an end”.
The leader of the Democratic Party, Marian Lupu, added: “I am very glad that we can present today a joint consolidated solution to overcome the current constitutional crisis”.
“I am glad to be able to fully support the decision made by the Alliance to end this crisis. I have discussed it with EU leaders and they are fully behind the solution. I have been in contact with all four leaders of the Alliance and the leader of the Communist Party in an effort to find a way to amend Article 78. It was not possible to reach a broad compromise between the alliance and the Communist Party on this and the only way forward was to bring the decision to the people, which is normal in any democracy. The solution is supported by the Council of Europe’s Venice Commission and the European Union. I appeal to all citizens in Moldova to exercise their right to vote in the coming referendum,” said Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland.
Note to editors
The Acting President of Moldova Mihai Ghimpu would have been obliged to dissolve Parliament on 16 June 2010 and call elections. Amendments to Article 78 of the Constitution are needed to break the political and institutional deadlock. There have been three attempts to elect a President in just over one year. Two alternative proposals for constitutional amendments were made by the CPRM and the AEI, neither of which had the necessary 2/3 majority to get the proposal passed.
The Council of Europe Secretary General was invited to Chisinau on 2 and 3 June to mediate a solution between the sides with a view to unlocking the political crisis.
Source: Council of Europe. Published on 3 June 2010