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Besesku and Yushchenko: two destinies of "orange" presidents

English // 11:02, 11 декабря 2009 // 2649
altAt times it happens the surprising history. The Ukrainian president Victor Yushchenko and its Romanian colleague Trayan Besesku became presidents nearly at the same time. Moreover, there is a lot of similar in their political destiny. The ex-mayor of Bucharest and ex-minister of transport in the several governments on elections of 2004 was the candidate from the main oppositional force of the Alliance «Spravedlivost & Pravda». In Romanian the abbreviation of this Alliance sounded as "YES" that necessarily causes associations with the main slogan of election campaign in Ukraine «Yushchenko – So!». Besides, Besesku was going to the elections under orange banners.

After the first round opposition and Trayan Besesku have accused the power of falsification of elections. This circumstance has drawn foreign countries' fixed attention to Romania. It is far from being useful for it. Just at that moment negotiations about the introduction of Romania into the European Union came to the end. The main Besesku’s opponent was the representative of ruling social-democratic party Adrian Nestase, who personified the old party nomenclature. The main Yushchenko's opponent was Victor Yanukovych who was not the representative of old generation, but he was considered as the official successor of «ruling the party» and "dictator" Leonid Kuchma.

Both Besesku and Yushchenko took westernized position though there was a certain consensus concerning to the introduction into the European Union within the political elite of Romania it cannot be said about Ukraine which is always torn apart between Russia and the West. As a matter of fact, and the further development of their political career coincided to some extent.
They were at war with the prime ministers and the Parliaments; both aspired to work out political reform which would strengthen their powers.

Both risked ahead of time to lose their posts. However, Trayan Besesku had to stand this test when the majority of two chambers of the Romanian Parliament have supported impeachment to the Head of the state. Constitution infringement (deputies have counted them already 19), an abuse of power, listening of telephone conversations of members of the government, corruption, partiality was the main charges the president. In general if to measure by the Ukrainian measure it is a trifle, but for 2/3 of deputies of the Romanian Parliament it was enough to remove Besesku from the power and to appoint a referendum. But the majority voted the Romanian was against Besesku's resignation on the referendum and he has not gained only political victory, but also a moral one. Yushchenko succeeded to avoid this trouble thanks to Leonid Kuchma who has installed difficult procedure of impeachment into the Constitution, which does its almost impossible.

Moreover, Besesku is more successful (and he is more purposeful and more charismatic), than Yushchenko. Romania has been a member of the European Union sience 2007, and Ukraine is darken The EU's door, despite all Ukranian attempts and statements about «the state in the centre of Europe».Romania succeeded to change Ukraine in the dispute about the Island Zmeiny. The decision of the Hague court has been apprehended as triumph of the Romanian diplomacy. Besides, Besesku succeeded that, what was not really possible for Yushchenko, it is to carry on his variant of political reform.

The idea of the necessity of making change into The Basic Law has been matured by the Romanian president for a long time. The head of the Romanian state considers, it was necessary to make it in 2005, soon after his election. In February of this year the commission, created by Besesku, has brought 23 offers for the reforming of a political system. There are parliamentary immunity cancellation, administrative and territorial reform, parliament reorganization among them (it is alike Ukraine, isn't it?). The president has declared that "the semipresidential" mode is «the best decision for Romania».Besides Besesku has supported to spend presidential elections simultaneously with parliamentary ones it would allow to form parliament under itself in many respects. However, as a result the Head of the Romanian state has stopped only on two safe innovations: he has suggested to transform The Parliament of two houses into The Unicameral Parliament and to reduce number of deputies from 471 persons (137 senators and 334 deputies of the lower chamber) to 300 persons. Nevertheless presidential election hasn't given chance only to realize the reform, but also to use it as pre-election way. It is truth Yushchenko tries to undertake it unsuccessfully. But he always doesn't succeed it.

According to article № 90 of the Constitution of Romania, «After consultation of Parliament the President of Romania may demand from the people to express the will on the problems representing national interest on a referendum».As a matter of fact, Besesku has made it, having directed his initiatives on The Parliament consideration in September. Deputies have come to the negative conclusion for the presidential initiative by a majority of votes, however Besesku has signed the decree about referendum holding in the same day with the first round of presidential election, having noticed, according to the Constitution, in this case the opinion of deputies is consultative. The same decision looks rather doubtful from the point of view of the Basic Law in which conditions of the constitutional changes are registered in details, but the well-known proverb says: "The winner is always right".

Besesku's opponents have accused him of intention to establish dictatorship. The president has referred to experience of other EU countries having The Unicameral Parliaments. There was one more terrible argument - notorious "fight against corruption" in Besesku's arsenal.  (Yushchenko struggles against «political corruption» too).

It is necessary to notice, the made changes become definitive after their approval on a referendum under the Romanian Constitution. Romania has already held the similar actions twice: in 1991 and in 2003. Victor Yushchenko has tried to realize the idea of acceptance of The Constitution by the referendum however the decision of The Constitutional Court has canceled his plans. The referendum result was quite predicted: 77.78 % of the voters declared for the transformation The Parliament of two Houses into The Unicameral Parliament. Reduction of number of deputies from 471 to 300 was supported by 88.84 % of voters.

However the main intrigue consisted in, if Besesku can to take advantage of victory results. Facts of sociological opinion polls predicted both his victory, and his opponent's, Mircha Dzhoane's. The results of the referendum have stimulated Besesku to the beginning of realization of the following stage of political reform, parliamentary immunity cancellations. It is necessary to notice Besesku's active policy has not passed for nothing attitude to neighboring Moldova. The president used actively support slogans «brothers behind the Rod» in his election campaign. It is known, Besesku belongs to the initiative of delivery of the Romanian passports to inhabitants of "Bessarabia".And if the communistic authorities of Moldova interfered with these plans in every possible way, won elections this year the opposition has made sharp turn towards Bucharest.

In the first round of voting Trayan Besesku have been supported by 7963 (90.7%) from 8777 Romanian citizens who have taken part in voting on the territory of Republic Moldova. Running forward, we will notice in the second round activity was much more. It was promoted also by the parties entering in the present ruling coalition. The Liberal Party of Moldova has organized free transportation for the citizens, wishing to take part in elections, from Kishinev to the election districts outside of the Moldavian capital. Total number of citizens taken part in elections of the Romanian president in the territory of Moldova has made 12300 inhabitants of republic having citizenship of Romania. Voting of the Romanian diaspora in Moldova was one of the most active in the world. Besesku has received about 95 % of voices.

During the pre-election debates the Ukrainian question has been raise. On the presidental election the opponent of the head of the state of Mircha Dzhoane has accused Besesku of intense relations of Romania with neighboring countries and has supported development of more friendly relations with Ukraine. «I am convinced The Black Sea will remain a strategic direction for Romania. But it is necessary our ports connect Romania with other continents, without being limited to one Black Sea region. It is necessary for us to open in relations with Ukraine and to develop cooperation, including, in the field of extraction on The Black Sea shelf», - Dzhoane has declared.

In reply to it Trayan Besesku has reminded the competitor on elections, dispute on the Black Sea continental shelf had been decided with Ukraine in a judicial order in The Hague and had been won by Romania. «We should not go with someone on compromises. I am the supporter of good relations with Ukraine but provided the steps towards each other will be mutual. Ukraine should respect interests of Romania in the region. We disagree with building of the channel Bystroe in delta of Danube by Ukraine, and we protect interests Ukrainian Romanian which may have possibility to be trained on the native language and to get the Romanian citizenship. It is impossible to put a spoke in wheel», - the president of Romania has concluded.

Besesku touch upon the Russian guestion. Answering questions of the newspaper «Romyniya Libere» on, if there is "danger" of returning of Romania and Bulgaria into a zone of the Russian influence, Besesku has noticed, it can occur «thanks to foulness of some politicians».As he said, Moscow has «agents of influence» in Romania who «play the Russian party». In particular, «a part of the Russian game» is his opponent in the second round of elections of head of the state Mircha Dzhoane which will appear «under political influence of Moscow» in case of a victory on elections. «This Russian party may be directed against Romania. The pragmatic relations are necessary for Romania with Russia, but we should not depend on Moscow political decisions»- has declared Besesku.

The second round has decided everything. According to Romanian The Central Executive Committee Trayan Besesku has won on presidential election Romania, having typed 50,33 % and his contender the Chairman of social and democratic party of Romania Mircha Dzhoane has typed 49,67 %.However, Dzhoane has declared, his party has made official decision to appeal against the results of elections in the Constitutional court. «The decision to appeal against the result of elections is not connected with my person - he was declared. It is necessary to recognize, the liberals and democrats and Trayan Besesku used undemocratic methods, including the bribery of voters».

In Romania the results of elections are declared valid after their statement by The Constitutional Court. So the intrigue continues. However moreover, hardly it is possible to count on Romania will want to repeat the Ukrainian experiment and to arrange the third round.

However, it is not excluded, after Besesku occupies his cabinet in The Palace of Kotrochen, he has to face with much more resistance of The Parliament. Before the second round two parties oppositional to the president, socials and democrats, and nationals and liberals have signed the agreement about the creation of new ruling coalition.

As to Ukraine presidency of Besesku does not promise it anything good. Of course, concerning our country Romanian elite shows the certain unity, and if with some nuances. But Besesku is the consecutive defender of "Bessarabian Romanian". In Ukraine the period of an interregnum is coming, it will weaken undoubtedly so weak foreign policy of the country. Romania has made much for a weakening of our country positions in The Black Sea region lately. Its hard line is known in attitude to the channel Danube-Black Sea. Also we may no doubt the Romanian diplomacy will take advantage of the next vague period in a country life to try to block this vital project for Ukraine. The future president of the country will have to form new relations with Romania there will be no also a trace from «orange romanticism», a search of friends «in struggle for democracy» and «lawyers in the NATO» in them. The pragmatism is possible based only on national interests in the Ukrainian and Romanian relations.

Artem Filipenko, Odessa