Romania’s ruling coalition split

Bucharest, Feb 26: Romania’s ruling National Liberal Party (PNL) Tuesday evening decided to withdraw its ministers from the government, announcing the split of the ruling Social Liberal Union (USL).

Liberal ministers and other officials will submit their resignations by Wednesday, at noon, according to PNL Chairman Crin Antonescu, Xinhua reported.

“USL no longer exists, because it had no more reason to exist,” Antonescu said at the end of the meeting of the party’s standing delegation.

“This is a decision that garnered an overwhelming vote, but it is a decision that was not easy to make, it is a decision we did not want, it is a decision we tried to avoid making,” the PNL leader told a press conference at Parliament Palace.

“We found it honest, fair not to prolong a festival of hypocrisy and to have the courage ourselves to find what is most certainly true and namely that the Social Liberal Union no longer exists, because it had no more reason to exist,” he added.

The Social Democratic Party, the National Liberal Party and the Conservative Party formed the Social Liberal Union in early 2011 to counter the then ruling coalition led by Democrat Liberal.

The first USL cabinet was sworn into office in May 2012, after a no-confidence motion toppled the ruling, and in December the same year, the USL won a sweeping victory in Romania’s quadrennial parliamentary elections.