Sunday, May 27, 2007

Romanian president invited to wear anti-racism shirt

Romania's President Traian Basescu, who last week called a reporter a "stinking gypsy," was on Friday invited by organizers of an anti-racism and violence football competition to wear a shirt with anti-racism messages, the local Mediafax news agency reported.

Basescu announced he would be present at the Romanian Cup final scheduled on Saturday, where he is to hand the trophy to the winning team.

Basescu was approached on Saturday, the day of the referendum on whether to impeach him for alleged constitutional abuses, by Andreea Pana, reporter of the Antena 1 television channel, while he and his wife were shopping in a Bucharest supermarket. Pana questioned Basescu on what was the expected outcome of the vote and recorded footage on her mobile phone.

The irritated Basescu snatched the phone from her, but it continued to record a conversation between him and his wife, Maria, in which the president called Pana a "stinking Gypsy".

Subsequently, he returned the phone to the reporter and some TV stations broadcast the footage.

Although the president issued an apology on Monday, saying the remarks were caused by stress, the International Federation of Journalists on Tuesday accused Basescu of abusive and offensive conduct, while the Romanian Press Club decided to file a criminal complaint against the president over the incident. The National Council for the Combat of Discrimination also decided to give Basescu a public admonition.

Source: Xinhua

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

He should try wearing a shirt with my unique anti-racism design.