12 December 2023

In an unprecedented move, The Good Lobby Profs stand in solidarity with Romania’s Association ‘Initiative for Justice’ as they challenge the European Commission’s decision to close the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM). This legal challenge comes amid growing concerns about the rule of law in Romania and follows the Commission’s controversial decision on 15 September 2023.

To delve into the full details of this crucial legal challenge, read the press release here.

Context and Impact

Introduced during Romania’s EU accession in 2007, the CVM was a vital tool for monitoring progress in judicial reform and anti-corruption efforts. The European Commission formally closed the CVM for Bulgaria and Romania on 15 September 2023, claiming that both countries had met all benchmarks. However, this decision has sparked widespread controversy, particularly regarding the situation in Romania.

The Association ‘Initiative for Justice,’ a professional association of Romanian prosecutors, has taken the bold step of directly suing the European Commission. Their legal action challenges the Commission’s flawed assessment, lack of transparency, and procedural violations. It is the first time a national prosecutors’ association has initiated legal proceedings against the European Commission, underscoring the gravity of the situation.

Key Points

Flawed Decision: The Association argues that the Commission erred in law, overlooking CJEU rulings and substantial evidence contradicting the closure of the CVM in Romania.

Lack of Transparency: The Commission failed to provide adequate reasons for closing the CVM, raising concerns about the integrity of the decision-making process.

Procedural Violations: The Commission bypassed essential procedural requirements and EU values by not obtaining Parliament and Council agreement before closing and repealing the CVM.

The premature closure of the CVM not only jeopardizes the rule of law but also has immediate implications for the work of Romanian prosecutors. It creates a climate of fear, hindering their ability to pursue corruption cases without fear of unjustified disciplinary actions or criminal prosecutions.

The Good Lobby Profs remain committed to supporting the Association ‘Initiative for Justice’ in their pursuit of justice and the preservation of the rule of law in Romania.

Read the Press Release

The Good Lobby Profs is an initiative gathering 60+ academics coming from over 30 countries that constantly monitors the respect of the rule of law by holding the EU and national institutions and leaders accountable.

For media inquiries, contact Prof. Laurent Pech at [email protected].