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Romania Table of Contents


The CSCE Meeting in Vienna

The Ceausescu regime's conduct at the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE) in Vienna, which concluded in January 1989, reinforced Romania's poor reputation on the issue of human rights. After a twenty-six-month review, an East-West consensus emerged, but Romania announced it was not bound by the agreement. From the start of the negotiations, Romania had attempted to dilute the draft text prepared by the nonaligned states. During the final negotiations, it submitted seventeen amendments to remove human rights provisions from the final document, in part because the Ceausescu regime realized that the agreement would facilitate emigration and create a serious brain drain. Other delegations, including some from Warsaw Pact states, rejected these efforts. Romania's refusal to abide by the agreement drew universal condemnation from the other delegations and represented another step toward the international isolation of Ceausescu's Romania. It appeared unlikely, however, that the defiant regime in Bucharest would be greatly swayed by international objections to its human rights policies.

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Among the most important studies of the Romanian political system are Mary Ellen Fischer's examinations of the Ceausescu regime: "Participatory Reforms and Political Development in Romania," in Political Development in Eastern Europe, edited by Jan F. Triska and Paul M. Cocks; "Political Leadership and Personnel Policy in Romania: Continuity and Change, 1965-1976," in World Communism at the Crossroads, edited by Steven Rosefielde; and "The Romanian Communist Party and Its Central Committee: Patterns of Growth and Change," in Southeastern Europe. Other excellent sources of information and analysis include Michael Shafir's Romania: Politics, Economics, and Society ; Daniel N. Nelson's Romania in the 1980s; and William E. Crowther's The Political Economy of Romanian Socialism. Foreign policy issues are reviewed and analyzed in Aurel Braun's Romanian Foreign Policy Since 1965: The Political and Military Limits of Autonomy; Ronald H. Linden's "Romanian Foreign Policy in the 1980s: Domestic-Foreign Policy Linkages," in Foreign and Domestic Policy in Eastern Europe in the 1980s: Trends and Prospects:, edited by Michael J. Sodaro and Sharon L. Wolchik; George Schöpflin's "Romanian Nationalism," published in Survey; and Robert Weiner's Romania's Foreign Policy and the United Nations. (For additional information and complete citations, see Bibliography.)

Data as of July 1989