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Junior Party Quits Romanian Government, Setting Up No-Confidence Vote

The USR's Dan Barna (left) has said he wants to revive the current governing coalition without Florin Citu (right).

All six ministers from a junior grouping in Romania's ruling coalition have resigned to clear the way for a no-confidence vote against Prime Minister Florin Citu's centrist government.

The current coalition is made up of Citu's Liberal Party, Save Romania Union (USR)-PLUS, and an ethnic Hungarian group and controls a combined 56 percent of parliament.

"This morning we did what we announced," USR leader Dan Barna said on September 7. "We registered and resigned, together with the USR-PLUS ministers, at the prime minister's office. We are moving forward."

The timetable for bringing a no-confidence vote is still unclear.

Citu's coalition was thrown into crisis on September 1 when he dismissed his justice minister over his failure to approve a $12 billion community development plan.

Crisis talks last week failed to achieve a deal to support Citu, the National Liberal Party's candidate for prime minister in December 2020.

A no-confidence vote would require support from the leftist opposition Social Democrats, who have resisted signing onto such motions over the past week.

Citu reportedly still enjoys the support of President Klaus Iohannis.

The USR's Barna has said he wants to revive the current governing coalition without Citu.

Even before the coronavirus pandemic, Romania was struggling with a widening budget shortfall from years of political instability and fiscal largesse.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters