The Romanian Ambassador in Oslo, Daniel Ionita, sent a letter to the editor in chief of the newspaper Aftenposten, to express disapproval for publishing defamatory statements about Romanian citizens in Norway, even by quoting a suspected human trafficker.
Such a presentation in the media harms the image of the great majority of honest Romanian citizens who are perfectly integrated into Norwegian society and contribute through taxes to the welfare of this country:
”Dear Mr. Espen Egil Hansen,
I am writing you with regard to the press article Dommeren til tiltalte: I avhør sier du at du ikke så dem igjen? Nå sier du at du har truffet dem. Forstår du at det er to forskjellige forklaringer?, published by Aftenposten on the 7th of October.
We are fully aware of the media sensitivity in this case, and we understand that Aftenposten has to inform impartially the public on the trial in the Court.
Under these circumstances, I have noticed that your reporter Olga Stokke tried to present the situation with accuracy, including a part of the defendant’s statement as reference. Of course, there is not our position to judge the case, and I want to assure you that the Embassy of Romania to Oslo does not defend criminals, considering that all those who make mistakes have to pay for their wrong deeds.
At the same time, I would like to point out that editing such declarations in a recurrent manner gives forth unfair prejudice to the vast majority of the honest Romanians living in Norway and paying taxes like any Norwegian citizen.
I am referring, mainly, to the defendant’s allegation: „Han sa at han ikke visste hva de fornærmede skulle her, men antok at de aktet å tigge, stjele og pante flasker som han sier alle vet at mange rumenere gjør i Oslo”. Publishing it without any opinion of the reporter might induce the perception that the editing office you head share or support this allegation, as well.
I am confident that our message will be understood properly and I assure you of my entire consideration.
The letter can be open here.