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Romania’s President Names Interim PM

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Romania’s President Klaus Iohannis on Monday appointed incumbent Justice Minister Catalin Predoiu as interim prime minister following the resignation earlier in the day of Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca as part of a ruling coalition deal for a rotating premiership.

According to the Presidential Administration, Iohannis took note of Ciuca’s resignation and invited the parliamentary parties to the Cotroceni Presidential Palace on Tuesday for consultations on the designation of Ciuca’s successor.

“Today … I end my activity as prime minister of Romania. In this way … at the coalition level, the procedures for carrying out the rotation begin,” Ciuca said in a press release.

“We proposed to have the government inaugurated by Thursday, and in this way, we can continue to deal with the issues that are priorities, both through the government program and for everything that the government of a country means,” he said.

The rotation should have taken place on May 25 but the teachers’ strike in the country delayed it. Ciuca had pledged to resolve the labor conflict before leaving office.

Education unions in the country decided on Monday to suspend their general strike after the government’s newest offer to hike teachers’ wages.

Under an agreement reached by the members of the ruling coalition that was sworn in in November 2021, the country will rotate its prime minister every 18 months before the next parliamentary elections, which are expected in December 2024. And Ciuca of the center-right National Liberal Party will now hand the post to Marcel Ciolacu, president of the Social Democratic Party, as agreed.

Under Romania’s Constitution, the head of state appoints a candidate for the post of prime minister after consulting the party or coalition of political parties that have an absolute majority in parliament.

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