January 16, 2012
Emil Boc, Romania’s prime minister, has warned that violent reaction to austerity measures may take down the country. From the Boston Globe:
Romania’s prime minister warned Monday that violent protests that left 59 injured over the weekend could jeopardize the country’s stability and chances for economic growth.
Some of the around 1,000 protesters clashed with police in downtown Bucharest Sunday, after four days of demonstrations against the government’s austerity measures turned violent. Police used tear gas and flares to repel demonstrators hurling stones and firebombs.
The riots erupted after the government imposed state job and wage cuts and a value-added tax hike under an IMF bailout scheme. In 2009, Romania took a two-year 20 billion euro ($27.5 billion) loan from the International Monetary Fund, the European Union and the World Bank.
The country is now experiencing a classic “IMF riot” as a result: