Romania ex-president faces prosecution for revolution deaths

Romania's general prosecutor has requested that a former president and prime minister be charged with crimes against humanity for their roles in the country's bloody anti-communist revolution.

General Prosecutor Augustin Lazar asked President Klaus Iohannis on Monday to approve the prosecutions of former President Ion Iliescu, former Premier Petre Roman, and former deputy prime minister Gelu Voican Voiculescu.

Roman called the development "absurd."

The three founded the National Salvation Front as Communist leader Nicolae Ceausescu was overthrown on Dec. 22, 1989 and executed three days later. Some 1,104 people died in Romania's revolt, the vast majority after Ceausescu's ouster.

Iliescu, a former communist official who headed the interim government, went on to be elected president three times.

Romania's president needs to authorize the prosecutions because the deaths occurred when the three were officials.