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Romanian president sacks anti-graft prosecutor

AFP  |  Bucharest 

Romanian today finally dismissed top anti-graft after long resisting attempts to remove her by the left-wing government.

The government had claimed a victory in May after the ordered to sack the popular Kovesi, of Romania's Anti-corruption Prosecutor's Office (DNA).

"In a state governed by the rule of of the must be respected (...) Romania's signed today the decree" to sack Kovesi, Iohannis' office said in a statement.

The prospect of Kovesi's removal had attracted vehement criticism from the opposition and concern from the international community.

Kovesi had held the high-profile post since 2013 and was considered a symbol of the fight against graft in one of the EU's most corruption-plagued members.

But in February the government launched a process to oust her, with accusing her of "violating the constitution" and "harming Romania's image" abroad.

Iohannis, who is from the centre-right and has frequently clashed with the government, had initially said he was "not convinced" by arguments to remove Kovesi, leading prominent figures in the ruling (PSD) to raise the prospect of his impeachment.

The and the Council of had also criticised the push to sack Kovesi.

The DNA had stepped up the campaign against corruption among local and national elected officials in recent years, earning accusations of abuse of power and the enmity of many in Romania's political class.

In February, Kovesi noted that despite "unprecedented attacks" by the government, in 2017 the DNA had brought 1,000 people to trial, including three ministers, five MPs and a

Over the winter, thousands of protestors took to the streets in support of Kovesi and to oppose her sacking.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, July 09 2018. 15:20 IST