Romania’s ruling Social Democratic Party (PSD) adopted on November 17 a resolution in which it referred to a so-called “parallel and illegitimate state” which it claimed is trying to take control of political power in the country.
Lately, politicians being investigated in various cases have been talking publicly about the existence of a parallel state, reportedly including the Romanian intelligence agency (SRI) and the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA), which they say is seeking to take control of the state’s power structures.
The PSD’s resolution comes at a time when the DNA has started a new investigation into the party's leader Liviu Dragnea, on suspicion of organising a criminal group, forgery and abuse of office. Dragnea, who had already been given a two-year suspended sentence for voter manipulation, is also being investigated for instigation to abuse of power and instigation to forgery when drawing up documents in a separate case.
“The PSD notes the existence of several vulnerabilities of the rule of law, from which the representatives of the “Parallel and Illegitimate State” benefit with the aim of discretionary control [over] the political power or the judicial power,” the resolution, posted by Hotnews.ro, said.
“Moreover, the latest actions of the “Parallel and Illegitimate State,” dissimulated under the so-called “anti-corruption fight” have as obvious aim the harassment and ultimately the decapitation of the political power, which was legally elected, so that it cannot fulfill its government programme promised to the voters,” the PSD resolution added.
Asked by reporters if the resolution referred to certain people or institutions when it referred to “the parallel and illegitimate state”, Dragnea said: “Yes, it is what you said. There have been talks in the public space for a long time,” according to Hotnews.ro.
However, the PSD’s view does not seem to be shared by all its members. MEP Sorin Moisa announced on November 18 he is resigning from the PSD saying that “under Dragea’s leadership, the PSD unburied, reactivated and adapted to Romania’s current context some of the reflexes cultivated in the national communism years, which I have hoped were long overcome.”
In a Facebook post, he added that the association of the European Anti-fraud Office (on whose notification Dragnea’s latest investigation is based) with the DNA investigation is "devastating" and "makes the theory of a parallel and illegitimate state look ridiculous".
Fellow PSD MEP Catalin Ivan said that Dragnea and those around him have "lost contact with reality", and the PSD is being dragged into a battle with an imaginary enemy, “with a general evil which comes from somewhere, from outside and inside the country, from services, multinational companies, banks, embassies, from everywhere but the leadership of the party.”
He went on to say that the parallel state exists and Dragnea is its most notorious representative, “an extremely wealthy man with a fortune he will never be able to justify.”
The document also accuses President Klaus Iohannis of not respecting his duties by failing to react to the “numerous breaches of the Romanian Constitution of the representatives of the Parallel and Illegitimate State.”
The presidency has rejected the idea of a parallel state in Romania. On November 14, the presidency’s spokeswoman said that “this phrase is an invention of those with judicial problems.”