Journalists Welcome Change of Management at Romanian Press Agency

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its European group, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), today welcomed the decision by Romanian Prime Minister Victor Ponta to remove Iona Ro?ca from the management of the national press agency, NPA AGERPRES.

"We welcome the development at NPA AGERPRES and appreciate the government's swift action over concerns we shared with the leadership and members of RFJ MediaSind, our affiliate in Romania," said Jim Boumelha, IFJ President. "We encourage the new management to work with journalists in harmony and mutual respect."

In a press statement released on Monday 25 February 2013, Romanian Prime Minister Victor Ponta announced that "Following numerous complaints received from national and international professional associations of journalists, accusing management at AGERPRES of abuses against Agency employees, General Manager Ioan Ro?ca was replaced by Alexandru Ion Giboi." The statement added that, on the same day, the change was validated in a joint session of the two chambers of Parliament.

IFJ President Jim Boumelha and EFJ President Arne König had on 22 February written to the authorities in Romania to raise their concerns over the government's failure to stop abuses by the NPA AGERPRES management against its employees. They had also stated their continuous support to their affiliate RFJ MediaSind in defending journalists' rights and freedom of expression and association. This was their second letter after having spoken out on the issue in September 2011.

Both IFJ and EFJ support the decision of the NFJ MediaSind to work with the new management which, in fulfilling its pledge to restoring social peace, has already met the leadership of the Professional Journalists' Organisation.

"The EFJ notes the positive comments made by the new management to restore social peace at the agency and we are hopeful that the situation at AGERPRES will improve for all journalists," added EFJ President Arne König.

For more information, please contact IFJ on + 32 2 235 22 07

The IFJ represents more than 600.000 journalists in 134 countries