Censorship became absurd when Communists took over, Corina Fusu

[Info-Prim Neo article from the Series “Moldova-20! Whereto?”] [Each of the 20 years of independence in Moldova has its meaning and role in what happened in the period and, undoubtedly, in what is going to happen in the country and the people’s lives in the future. Info-Prim Neo asked politicians, analysts, experts and personalities from different areas to pronounce on the main events that took place during a certain year and assess their impact on the country.] [The year 2002 as seen by Corina Fusu, vice president of the Liberal Party and Member of Parliament] • [January –April] – The Christian Democratic People’s Party (PPCD) staged protests against the Communist government. • [February – March] – Journalists of Teleradio-Moldova Company protested against the censorship imposed by the Communist government. • [June 6] – Parliament decided to create the Center for Combating Corruption and Economic Crime. • [October 7] – There was held the Summit of the CIS Member States. • [December 20] – There was adopted the law concerning the taking into and out of Moldova of goods by private individuals. [According to Corina Fusu, vice president of the Liberal Party], the important events of 2002 centered around the protests staged by the journalists of Teleradio-Moldova Company (TRM). The protests started on February 26 following the censorship imposed by the Communisms in the institution. Corina Fusu, who was presenter and special correspondent at the TV News Department of TRM in that period, said the censorship became absurd. It seriously violated the ethical and professional norms of the journalism, the freedom of expression and the people’s right to be informed correctly and responsibly, by observing the principle of plurality of opinion. It was impossible to work when the personalities were banned from appearing in programs and the topics important for society were kept under lock and key. Teleradio-Moldova became an instrument of propaganda and for manipulating public opinion. “The Communists took over and the people expressed their disagreement with what was going on at the company. That winter, thousands of persons gathered in front of the company’s building, chanting the slogan: “Don’t use the TV to lie to the people”. More than 400 journalists signed the Declaration of Protest against censorship and pleaded for transforming Teleradio-Moldova into an institution that would serve the public interests not the interests of the ruling party. I have respect for the then journalists who overcame their fear to defend our dignity and the dignity of the wronged people, to face the police, the Security and Information Service and Vladimir Voronin,” said Corina Fusu. According to the MP, most of those who revolted do not longer work at Teleradio-Moldova, but they fulfilled their duty and showed that justice was on the journalists’ side. This fact was confirmed by the European Court of Human Rights, which ruled in favor of the journalists in September 2010. Corina Fusu remembered that two days after the protests began, the administration of TRM banned the transmission of videos through satellite to the European Union. The then Communist government was leaning towards Russia and Belarus. The reason for the halt in the transmission of videos was clear – to prevent the international opinion from finding out about journalists’ protests and about what was going on in the Great National Assembly Square. The protests mounted by the Christian Democratic People’s Party against the compulsory studying of Russian in schools and the exclusion of the History of Romanians course from the education institutions also marked the year 2002. “During over a month, the media outlets controlled by the Communists did not report about those events or presented them in a distorted way. The people obstinately defended their language and history until May 2002, when the Council of Europe intervened and a moratorium was declared on the themes imposed by the Communists. However, the Integrated History subject was included in the school programs. The Law on the National Public Broadcaster was adopted in the summer of 2002, but censorship at the company continued until 2009, when the Communists lost the parliamentary elections,” said Corina Fusu. As to the Parliament’s decision to create the Center for Combating Corruption and Economic Crime, the MP said the given institution was in fact conceived by the PCRM as an instrument for blackmailing and manufacturing evidence against inconvenient persons. “The role of this institution was distorted and corruption became deep-rooted in Moldova. The schemes built by the Communists during eight years continue to work. The corruption combating strategy adopted by the Parliament of Moldova during the last session of 2011 is a first step towards reforming this area,” said the MP. Corina Fusu also spoke about the impact of the Summit of the CIS States that was held on October 7, 2002 in Chisinau. It reconfirmed that the organization remains only a kind of “cultural-historical club” of the CIS leaders. Nothing sensational happened. The atmosphere in which the meeting took place was affected by the deterioration of the relations between Russia and Georgia and with Belarus and by the delay in solving the Transnistrian conflict. The only favorable element was that the meeting was held on the day when the President of Russia Vladimir Putin turned 50. All the official discourses started with greetings addressed to the Kremlin leader. Moreover, the host of the meeting, President Vladimir Voronin, stressed that Vladimir Putin’s visit to Chisinau was a ‘gift made to Moldova’”, said Corina Fusu. She also said that the period of 20 years of independence was difficult and controversial. The country hadn’t been ruled by powerful personalities as in the Balti States. “The coming of the Agrarians to power in 1994 and then of the Communists in 2001 was a disaster for us. The poverty and corruption is due to the narrow interests and wish to become rich of those who held high-ranking posts,” said Corina Fusu. In conclusion, she stated that 60% of the people voted for the parties that formed the Alliance for European Integration and during two years Moldova held five elections and continues to experience a presidential crisis. She said that the political will of the AEI is needed to build stability and implement the promised reforms. {Corina Fusu is the vice president of the Liberal Party (PL) and a member of the Parliament of Moldova. In 1987-1990, she was the host of the program “Praise to the Motherland” that centered on traditions and folklore. During nine years, in 1990-1999, she was editor-in-chief and host of the program “Telematinal”. In 1997-1999, she had held the post of deputy head of the TV News Department, while in 1999-2004 she was the host and special correspondent of the same department. She is the author and presenter of the program in Romanian and Russian “La Francosphere”, which lasted from 2000 until 2004. In 2007, Corina Fusu became a Chisinau councilor representing the PL, while in 2009 she took the seat of MP. From 2008, she has headed the Liberal Women’s Organization. } [Dumitrita Ciuvaga, Info-Prim Neo]

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