Lifting of the parliamentary immunity of three Moldovan parliamentarians
Written question No 449 to the Committee of Ministers

Doc. 10300
4 October 2004

Reply from the Committee of Ministers
adopted at the 898th meeting of the Ministers’ Deputies (30 September 2004)

I. Written Question No. 449 by Mr van der Linden (Doc. 10249)

On 10 March 2004 President Peter Schieder wrote to the Speaker of the Moldavian Parliament requesting clarification on the events surrounding the lifting of parliamentary immunity on three Moldavan parliamentarians, one of whom was simultaneously a member of the Parliamentary Assembly.

By letter dated 2 April 2004, Mrs Eugenia Ostapciuc, President of the Moldavan Parliament, replied to Mr Schieder.

Does the Committee of Ministers believe that the lifting of the parliamentary immunity of MM Vlad Cubreacov, Iurie Rosca and Stefan Secareanu was justified and that the allegations made against the parliamentarians relate in fact to common criminal and / or defamation infringements and are not in fact acts of political retribution against major figures of the political opposition just one year prior to legislative elections?

Can the Committee of Ministers ascertain what legal actions, if any, have yet been initiated, what is the timetable(s) for such legal proceedings and what guarantees can the Moldavan authorities give of complete impartiality and scrupulous independence of the judiciary in whatever legal proceedings may follow?

II. Reply by the Committee of Ministers

1.         The Committee of Ministers has taken note of the question put by the distinguished parliamentarian.

2.         In reply, it wishes to recall that first of all, in a democracy, the lifting of the parliamentary immunity of a member of parliament must remain an exceptional measure, which must be sustained by strict judicial and procedural guarantees, in line with European standards.  Such a measure must never be put to use for partisan political purposes, but only to ensure the unobstructed functioning of justice.

3.         The Committee of Ministers is not in a position to substitute itself for the MoldovanState bodies whose competence it is to rule on the lifting of the parliamentary immunity.  It recalls that it has offered the Moldovan Parliament, in cooperation with the Parliamentary Assembly, expert assistance in reforming the internal rules of procedure of the Moldovan Parliament and expects that the Moldovan Parliament will respond positively and without delay to this offer.

4.         With respect to the last paragraph of Written Question No. 449, the Committee of Ministers draws the attention of the distinguished parliamentarian to the fact that the evaluation of the progress of reform of the judiciary is within the remit of the regular monitoring procedures, with respect both to the Committee of Ministers and the Parliamentary Assembly.

5.         Lastly, the Committee of Ministers reiterates its resolve, in the framework of this election year for Moldova, to follow closely the respect by Moldova of its commitments to the Council of Europe including follow-up of the relevant Parliamentary Assembly recommendations.