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NATIONAL PROJECTS

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Summary of the Guide for Practitioners on Public Procurement

30-06-2015

A “Guide for practitioners in public procurement” has been launched within the Fighting Public Procurement Criminality project, coordinated by Freedom House Romania with the financial support of Prevention of and Fight Against Crime Programme of the EU - European Commission - DG Home Affairs. 900 copies of this 220-page guide have been distributed amongst Romanian magistrates and judicial police officers dealing with public procurement fraud issues. Its digitalized version is available at ghidachizitii.lfwd.io for free consultation and for supporting training and specialization activities of the Romanian public institutions. This e-book format of the guide to be constantly updated with the latest changes in legislative and judicial practice. The current legal framework is about to be substantially modified by the end of 2015, in order to implement the new EU legislative package on public procurement. Pending the new legislation, in this English summary of the guide we focus on the current legal framework for public procurement and some of its challenges and shortcomings.The guide will be further developed within another project - „Legislaţie, economie, competiţie şi administraţie”  - Law, Economy, Competition and Administration, which will approach the topic of public procurement fraud with an emphasis on prevention. The target group of magistrates will be supplemented by civil servants that work within the investment and procurement departments of county councils, municipalities, as well as of other contracting authorities.

Guidelines for Improving the Procedures and Policies in Combating Trafficking in Minors is now available online

08-04-2015

The project Action against trafficking minors. Increasing the efficiency of EU and EEA police force by implementing EU directives and norms in the field has been concluded with the launch of Guidelines for Improving the Procedures and Policies in Combating Trafficking in Minors. Based on the SWOT-analysis conducted in Romania, Denmark and the Netherlands,.The Guidelines are now available in electronic format in English, Romanian, Italian, Spanish and Greek. The guide also contains procedural and legislative recommendations, meant to optimize the manner in which actors involved in trafficking in human beings are being treated. The guide is based on the SWOT analyses that were made in Romania, Denmark and the Netherlands and relies on a pronounced comparative approach.

Closing of the “Fighting Public Procurement Criminality. An operational approach” project

01-04-2015

Closing of the “Fighting Public Procurement Criminality. An operational approach” project

With 17 partners, “Fighting Public Procurement Criminality. An operational approach” was the most complex project that Freedom House Romania has managed so far. The project was concluded on Friday, March 27th 2015, with the closing conference and the release of a guide on public procurement both in print and in digital version.

Projects of Freedom House Romania and Expert Forum, praised in the CVM's Technical Report of the European Commission

30-01-2015

Projects of Freedom House Romania and Expert Forum, praised in the CVM's Technical Report of the European Commission

The Technical Report attached to the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism's Report, published by the European Commission on January 28th 2015, mentions several projects developed by Freedom House Romania as best practice examples, in partnership with other non-governmental organizations, most notably Expert Forum, with official institutions – the Ministry of Justice, the Superior Council of Magistracy, the National Institute of Magistracy, the General Prosecutor’s Office, the National Anticorruption Directorate, the National Council for Solving Complaints, the National Integrity Agency, together with HotNews.ro and EurActiv platforms, and the National Association of Specialists in Procurement (ANSA).

European Scholarships for Journalists, 2015 edition

30-01-2015

European Scholarships for Journalists, 2015 edition

The European Commission Representation in Bucharest, Freedom House Romania and Mercury360 Communications are pleased to announce that the entry submission period for the 2015 edition of “European Scholarships: Journalists in Dialogue” is now open.The program is addressed to journalists from the Romanian local press – print, online, radio, TV -, as well as to Romanian bloggers and freelancers, that manifest interest for European themes and positioning Romania in the European Union.

Four Romanian journalists, awarded with the Young Journalist of the Year 1.000 euros prizes

27-11-2014

Four Romanian journalists, awarded with the Young Journalist of the Year 1.000 euros prizes

Victor Cozmei (Hotnews.ro), Anca Simina (Gandul.info), Roxana Pricop (Ziarul Financiar) and Andreea Pavel (Info Sud-Est Constanța), covering justice, current affairs, economics and environmental issues, were awarded on November 2014 as the best young Romanian journalists.

VICTOR COZMEI FÜR BERICHTERSTATTUNG ÜBER GERECHTIGKEIT AUSGEZEICHNET

27-11-2014

VICTOR COZMEI FÜR BERICHTERSTATTUNG ÜBER GERECHTIGKEIT AUSGEZEICHNET

KAS UNTERSTÜTZT RUMÄNISCHEN WETTBEWERB TJA Bei einer Gala am 26. November in Bukarest übergab Christian Spahr, Leiter des KAS-Medienprogramms Südosteuropa, den Preis "The Young Journalist of the Year" (TJA) an den Journalisten Victor Cozmei von Hotnews.ro. Der TJA-Journalistenwettbewerb wird von Freedom House Rumänien organisiert und von der KAS unterstützt. Cozmei wurde in der Kategorie "Justiz und Rechtsstaat" für seinen Artikel "Rumänien, Paradies für verurteilte Anwälte" ("România, raiul avocaților condamnați penal") ausgezeichnet. Dieser befasst sich mit der Toleranz für Korruption im Rechtssystem – in rumänischen Gerichten üben viele wegen Korruption verurteilte Anwälte ihren Beruf weiterhin aus. Cozmei führte tiefgehende Recherchen zu diesem Thema durch und befragte alle Beteiligten. Die Jury schätzte sein außergewöhnliches persönliches Engagement und den Umfang seiner journalistischen Recherche.

Public Procurement Corruption in Romania

13-11-2014

Public Procurement Corruption in Romania

Public procurement in Romania is a €17 billion market, but more than 60% of procedures are hit by complaints. A new project has highlighted fraud and irregularities in the system, and suggested how to improve the situation.

VP Biden emphasizes "profound” US interest in democracy and rule of law in Romania

14-02-2014

VP Biden emphasizes "profound” US interest in democracy and rule of law in Romania

According to a statement issued by the Office of the US Vice President, Joe Biden had a telephone call with Romanian President Traian Basescu to discus regional developments. Joe Biden expressed US ”appreciation for Romania’s continued contributions to NATO missions.

John KERRY - The aspirations of citizens from Central and Eastern Europe are trampled over by corrupt, oligarchic interests

04-02-2014

John KERRY - The aspirations of citizens from Central and Eastern Europe are trampled over by corrupt, oligarchic interests

John Kerry's recent remarks at Munich Security Conference: "We see a disturbing trend in too many parts of Central and Eastern Europe and the Balkans.

WATCHDOG

30-06-2016

Manifesto for Reconciliation

Manifesto for Reconciliation

Manifesto for ReconciliationRomanian civil society urge the European leaders to show wisdom, restraint and a sense of history when dealing with the effects of the Brexit referendum, at this Council and beyond We, the undersigned, feel shocked and aggrieved by the events unfolding these days in UK and a number of EU capitals, after the Brexit referendum. We plead with our European leaders for reason, maturity and restraint when dealing with the aftermath of the vote, whether they are in charge of governments, EU institutions or elected in the national and European parliaments. The vote has left a great European society – Britain – deeply divided, causing rifts in families, friendships, among colleagues and neighbours, divisions that will take years to heal. The unity of the country itself is in doubt, again. These is not laughing matter for politicians in charge with the continent’s destiny. Leaders are there not to entertain, or create rifts in societies, but to heal them.The Brexit referendum is a major setback for the whole European Union. Yes, there were moments of crisis before since, as many analysts have noted, EU was not predestined, but a makeshift project by jealous nation states. Other outcomes were possible for Europe after World War II, but with good luck and common sense, institutions were created which secured an unprecedented half a century of peace and prosperity together.We should not romanticize the past: those who had a vision of tolerance, freedom and prosperity have been a minority from the beginning of the project and had to navigate the turbulent waters of Realpolitik. The disconcerting feeling today, however, is that destructive views become mainstream at the highest echelons of governance and that populism, hysteria and irrationality disguise themselves increasingly successfully as “speaking the truth to the people”, in the new era of instant media. Yes, EU is perfectible and, among other things, has to communicate better. It is clumsy or sometimes outright incompetent at explaining itself, allowing urban myths and disinformation to spread which makes it guilty for fictitious mistakes; or for those made in fact by the national governments; or by failing to show how it stands for the greater common good and against petty, parochial interests; or by becoming the rhetorical scapegoat for unpopular but necessary measures carried out by national leaders. It has become by default the lighting rod of choice for all European demagogues, left and right.The Brexit vote was thus a failure for all of us. We failed to listen to citizens' concerns, with patience and empathy. We failed to fight irresponsible populism and shameless propaganda in more than one country of the EU; we failed to see the discontented and build a bridge to them. And, maybe, too many generations in Western Europe have spent their life in common security and prosperity to notice how precious and unprecedented these achievements are. They tend to take them as God-given, like the air they breathe. We, East Europeans, are here to remember them that it is not so: it is easy to destroy and very difficult to build. The citizens of Britain will remain Europeans, no matter how they voted. Their opinions must be respected, even those we disagree with. Half of the British society opted to remain with us and they will have to live with consequences they did not vote for. The other half felt frustrated and not represented at the EU level. We need to listen, understand and think where we, as Europeans, failed. We must behave responsibly and not escalate the divisions. It is in our shared interests to have a strong, united Great Britain in a united, peaceful, and tolerant Europe. Let your decisions not punish those who wanted to remain in the EU, alongside those who opted out. Let your decisions not break up a country.This is not the time to let loose the anger, frustration and the temptation to retaliate, since irreversible decisions will cause even deeper divisions among Europeans. Strong, decisive, definitive ruptures will not discourage populists in other countries: they will escalate the fear, hate, xenophobia and claims for isolationism. The damage they have done and continue to do in more than one country of our Union can be cured only by reconciliation, reason and patience. If there is one lesson to be learned from the Brexit experience, let it be only that no people in Europe should ever be asked to make a choice that could break up their society and country, or be exposed to a campaign that brings out our darkest devils – despair, anger, fear and intolerance – and offers no plausible solution to citizens’ concerns.Bucharest, June 29th 2016 Expert Forum (EFOR), Bucharest, www.expertforum.ro Freedom House, Romania, www.freedomhouse.ro Romanian Center for European Policy (CRPE), Bucharest, www.crpe.ro Funky Citizens, Bucharest, www.funkycitizens.org    

Freedom House Romania is an independent nongovernmental organization that supports the expansion of freedom in the world.

 

Freedom is possible only in democratic political systems in which the governments are accountable to their own people; the rule of law prevails; and freedoms of expression, association, and belief, as well as respect for the rights of minorities and women, are guaranteed.

 

Freedom ultimately depends on the actions of committed and courageous men and women. We support nonviolent civic initiatives in societies where freedom is denied or under threat and we stand in opposition to ideas and forces that challenge the right of all people to be free. Freedom House Romania functions as a catalyst for freedom, democracy and the rule of law through its analysis, advocacy and action.

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