Romania elects a surprise President; Klaus Iohannis

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Some 25 years after the elimination of dreaded dictator Nicolae Ceausescu, Romania delivers another surprise.

The surprise is the election of a former mayor to the highest office of the country.

An ethnic German - 'Klaus Iohannis' has been sworn in as the President of the east European nation beating the incumbent PM Victor Ponta in a run-off election.

The Victory

  • His shock win is largely credited to the overwhelming support of overseas voters who were angered by the present establishment for not being allowed to vote in the first round.
  • The 55-year pro-western leader replaces Traian Basescu, who demit office having served 2 successive terms (maximum) of 5 years.

Key Points

  • Romania is a middle-income country with economy primarily based on export of services.
  • The country has a unitary semi-presidential structure giving more power to the president as against the ceremonial role of our President.
  • Like US, President is directly elected - however, he is not as powerful as the former. 
  • Some of his powers are to appoint the prime minister, oversee foreign politics and veto draft laws.

In News

  • The country has recently been in news for allowing US to open a missile defense base in south - close to arch rival Russia.


  • Capital and largest city: Bucharest
  • Population: close to 2 crore (smaller than Haryana)
  • Area: 2,38,391 square km (about the size of Uttar Pradesh)
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