- ISIL creates all-female brigade to terrorize women into following Sharia law
- ISTOOK: Obama wants to be impeached
- Obama to Latin leaders: Help with border
- Military bans troops from Baptist church event honoring ‘God’s Rescue Squad’
- ‘Pocket drones’: U.S. Army developing tiny surveillance tools for the next big war
- Belgian cafe posts sign: Dogs allowed, but Jews stay out
- Gen. Dempsey: Pentagon studying Russian readiness plans not viewed ‘for 20 years’
- John McCain: Botched, two-hour execution of murderer is ‘torture’
- House GOP ready to move border bill
- Bomb squad called after live WWII artillery washes on Cape Cod beach
Romanian PM warns violence could destabilize country
Question of the Day
BUCHAREST, Romania — Dozens of demonstrators gathered in downtown Bucharest on Monday as Romania‘s prime minister warned that violent protests that left 59 injured over the weekend could jeopardize stability and economic growth.
Police on Sunday clashed with a small contingent of about 1,000 protesters in the capital after four days of demonstrations against austerity measures turned violent. Tear gas and flares were used to repel demonstrators hurling stones and firebombs.
Interior Minister Traian Igas said Monday that about 8,700 people attended weekend demonstrations around the country, but only in Bucharest did the protests turn violent, when — according to Interior Ministry officials — fans of football clubs infiltrated the demonstrations and then wreaked havoc in the city.
Bucharest Mayor Sorin Oprescu said the windows of stores, banks and bus stations were smashed and street lights vandalized.
Prime Minister Emil Boc on Monday called the violence “unacceptable” and said it “cannot be tolerated.” He promised, however, that a controversial health law that sparked the protests will be redrafted.
Mr. Boc urged Romanians to understand that tough austerity measures were needed to avoid a default.
“We understand the hardships Romanians are facing. … The crisis has been harsher than we imagined,” he said.
In 2009, Romania took a two-year 20-billion-euro ($27.5 billion) loan from the International Monetary Fund, the European Union and the World Bank as its economy shrank by 7.1 percent. It imposed harsh austerity measures under the agreement, reducing public wages by 25 percent and increasing taxes.
Anger has mounted over the wage cuts, slashed benefits, higher taxes and widespread corruption.
Alis Grasu of Bucharest’s ambulance services said 59 people suffered injuries during the disturbances, 23 were briefly hospitalized, and three were still in the hospital.
Police official Aurel Moise said about 250 people were fined for their conduct and 36 will be investigated. He said some of the violent protesters were football fans, suggesting that they had come to cause trouble rather than take part in the protest.
Authorities urged peaceful protesters to distance themselves from troublemakers at future marches.
TWT Video Picks
President wants everyone but himself to pay more
- 'Pocket drones': U.S. Army developing tiny spies for the next big war
- ISTOOK: Obama wants to be impeached
- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- Ted Nugent loses second casino gig for 'racist remarks'
- NAPOLITANO: What if our democracy is a fraud?
- Obama orders Pentagon advisers to Ukraine
- Ohio university quiz implies atheists are naturally smarter than Christians
- White House readies for House GOP impeachment push: 'Foolish' to ignore
- Afghan who killed three U.S. Marines in 2012 to serve over 7-year prison sentence
- EDITORIAL: Obama's 'economic patriotism' means higher taxes
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq