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Romanian Radio Station Cracks Down on In-House Espionage

© Photo : PixabaySurveillance
Surveillance - Sputnik International
A Romanian radio station has put their employees in an unusual contract - insisting that they refuse to collude with intelligence agents or face a US$107,000 (€100,000) fine. It comes amid Romania's attempts to battle endemic corruption throughout the country.

In the war against fake news, one Romanian radio station has gone to extreme lengths to try and ensure the loyalty and credibility of their staff.

All 29 associates have agreed to sign a binding statement that says that they have not collaborated with intelligence agents, and that if they do so in the future, they will be fired immediately and forced to pay a whopping US$107,000 in damages to the radio station.

The extraordinary media contract, together with the eye-watering potential fine involved, may seem like excessive employee oversight, but some of Radio Guerilla's own employees are understanding of the move.

For many Romanians, corruption is one of the most high profile political problems facing their country.

In February 2017, protesters poured onto the streets of Bucharest and other Romanian cities, successfully forcing the Romanian government to abandon a controversial decree, which would have limited the scope of anti-corruption prosecutions.

© REUTERS / Octav GaneaProtesters wave a Romanian flag during a demonstration in Bucharest, Romania, February 1, 2017.
Protesters wave a Romanian flag during a demonstration in Bucharest, Romania, February 1, 2017. - Sputnik International
Protesters wave a Romanian flag during a demonstration in Bucharest, Romania, February 1, 2017.

The proposal would have decriminalized corruption offenses involving sums lower than US$47,200 (€44,000).

That's despite Romania losing an estimated US$15-32 billion to corruption each year. 

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The government's U-turn in the face of such widespread resistance to the proposal was widely celebrated, but the fight against endemic political corruption is far from over. Romania's Justice Minister Florin Iordache was pushed to step down, but his boss, Prime Minister Sorin Grindeanu has refused to do follow suit.

There have been allegations that the state's intelligence services have sought to infiltrate political and media institutions, in a bid to help shape policy and propaganda.

Radio Guerilla associates say their initiative is aimed at protecting media ethics and helping local media regain its credibility.

They hope that other media institutions will follow their example. 

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