With shouts in favor of Europe and against corruption a group of demonstrators welcomed European leaders at their arrival in Bucharest.
They wanted to make their voices heard precisely when Romania assumes the presidency of the European Union.
They ask Brussels to put pressure on the government and force it to respect European values.
"We are here to show we as Romanian people we want to be part of the EU and we want to live in a country that applies the rule of law," one activist tells our reporter.
The Romanian presidency begins then under pressure. No one doubts about its ability at technical level, his team in Brussels is perfectly prepared there are doubts about its political capacity specifically due to the reforms the government is carrying out in the judicial field and which rise concerns in Brussels.
It is worrying because the fight against corruption could be watered down. But the Romanian government defended itself.
"We will show you that Romania deserves the respect of the European community and the status of equal partner in the great European construct," Viorica Dancila told a press conference.
The leader of the ruling Social Democrats, Liviu Dragnea, has a conviction for vote-rigging and has been pressing Romania’s President Klaus Iohannis for the legal changes. The EU Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, expressed disapproval of that at a joint news conference with Iohannis in Bucharest.
"Yes, Europe is built on compromise, but there could not be a compromise when it comes to what is essential (rule of law). And what is essential would be negatively impacted if an amnesty, as some in this country envisage, saw the light of day. This would be a step backwards."Europe is built on compromise, but there could not be a compromise when it comes to what is essential (rule of law). And what is essential would be negatively impacted if an amnesty, as some in this country envisage, saw the light of day. This would be a step backwards," Juncker explains.
Despite tensions, Brussels and Bucharest will have to work together and the agenda arrives loaded: from Brexit and European elections it is necessary to add the issue of migration and the future EU budget.