- Title: 30 years on - Romanians commemorate victims and recall 1989 demonstrations
- Date: 16th December 2019
- Summary: VARIOUS OF PORTRAIT OF ELENA CEAUSESCU (CENTRE), WIFE OF FORMER DICTATOR NICOLAE CEAUSESCU (SOUNDBITE) (English) OWNER OF MUSEUM OF COMMUNIST CONSUMER, CHRISTINE CIZMAS, SAYING: "Here we have toys and plays (games) that we used to have back then. Dolls, more dolls. I hated these ones - I had this one too and I hated it, but I had it because I didn't have any other option." DOLLS FROM COMMUNIST TIMES WHEELED HORSE TOY (SOUNDBITE) (English) OWNER OF MUSEUM OF COMMUNIST CONSUMER, CHRISTINE CIZMAS, SAYING: "But I know that I'm (a part of) sacrificed generation, that it's a transition period, but we... Iliescu (Former Romanian President Ion Iliescu) is still alive and people who were not supposed to be in power, they are still in power and it's our fault." STROLLER, TV SETS LINED ATOP EACH OTHER (SOUNDBITE) (English) OWNER OF MUSEUM OF COMMUNIST CONSUMER, CHRISTINE CIZMAS, SAYING: "There were some difficult moments when there was shooting all around us. My mother used to protect me a lot. We ran home. But, not... What I remember is a square full of people. There were cars coming with hotâ€¦ With bread, with oranges, with lemons. People were throwing them out to the people to eat. And people were very, very happy. I saw a lot of tears of happiness, people were embracing you and this is the most vivid memory I have. A moment of real liberation, joy." OLD RADIOS, RECORDS IN BACKGROUND (SOUNDBITE) (English) OWNER OF MUSEUM OF COMMUNIST CONSUMER, CHRISTINE CIZMAS, SAYING: "We have this passion for resisting. Resisting for what? I mean, you can change something in an instant if you want. I think this is the biggest problem. And the society, the fact that the people who are quality people, people who invest in their education are leaving, are not staying anymore here because they are ashamed, they know that they could have more privileges and they do a better life for them(selves)." WORK SAFETY POSTER CHILDREN WALKING BY MUSEUM / TIMISOARA MUSEUM WITH LARGE POSTERS FOR PHOTO EXHIBITION MARKING 30TH ANNIVERSARY SINCE TIMISOARA UPRISING POSTERS FOR PHOTO EXHIBITION
- Embargoed: 30th December 2019 17:15
- Keywords: Nicolae Ceausescu Romanian revolution Timisoara uprising fall of Communism
- Location: TIMISOARA, ROMANIA
- City: TIMISOARA, ROMANIA
- Country: Romania
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA007BA86WXL
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Thirty years after the Romanian Revolution of 1989, a commemoration event took place on Monday (December 16) in Timisoara with Romanian President Klaus Iohannis laying a wreath at the memorial to victims of the first uprising which led to overthrowing of Romania's communist dictatorship.
Yet there was little sign in the western Romanian city of the euphoria that drove the revolution of December 1989, with the anniversary event only sparsely attended.
Christine Cizmas, who runs the Museum of Communist Consumer in Timisoara, recalled the past as she showed the old TV sets, radios and toys she used to play with in her childhood, all gathered in the replica of an apartment in communist times.
"There were some difficult moments when there was shooting all around us. My mother used to protect me a lot. We ran home," Cizmas said, adding that the most vivid memory she has was a square full of people embracing each other.
"A moment of real liberation, joy."
In 1989, revolution was sparked after Timisoara's ethnic Hungarian priest Laszlo Tokes, who was accused of dissident activity, was threatened with deportation.
As the number of people swelled into mass protests, government security forces opened fire on demonstrators, some having sought refuge in the city's cathedral.
Nearly 100 Timisoara citizens were killed and hundreds more wounded as the city stood alone to defy Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu's forces for five desperate days before the revolt blazed a trail to Bucharest and the rest of the country.
The Timisoara revolt led to street battles in Bucharest in which up to 10,000 people were reported to have been killed. Ceausescu fled the city but was recaptured and brought to trial and execution on December 25.
(Production: Fedja Grulovic, Boki Babic, Malgorzata Wojtunik)
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