Europe

Romania: Hundreds protest move to ease off on corruption

Some 300 people have gathered outside Romania's government offices to protest against a move by lawmakers to pardon acts of corruption, months after massive anti-graft protests.

Demonstrators arrived Wednesday evening, waving Romanian, NATO, European Union and U.S. flags, and yelling: "We have to defend the country from thieves!"

They protested shortly after a parliamentary legal committee approved a draft that would grant an amnesty to people convicted of bribery and influence peddling. The move is a preliminary step before a parliamentary vote.

Lawmakers from the ruling Social Democracy Party dominate the committee.

Hundreds of thousands protested this winter after the government in January moved to decriminalize official misconduct. The government eventually scrapped the ordinance.