In an election short on winners, Romanian ultranationalist party emerges as surprise new force

Foto: Inquam Photos / Sabin Cirstoveanu

It believes in family, nation, faith and freedom, but until Sunday elections in Romania few had heard of the Alliance for the Union of Romanians.

 The ultra-conservative party was the biggest surprise of parliamentary elections on Sunday, when it came out of nowhere to become the fourth-largest party in the Romanian Parliament, winning  9% of the vote according to partial results.

”We will start a conservative revolution,” the party’s co-chairman Claudiu Tarziu said after the vote.” So far, we haven’t had a conservative party with the four fundamental values: family, nation, faith and freedom.”

The party has staged well-organized anti-mask protests this year during the pandemic and declares itself hostile to same-sex marriage, the European Union and globalism.

Founded in September 2019, it hadn’t even registered in pre-election opinion polls. Its strong showing was a celebration for the newcomer in an election which was short on winners.

It did well in some rural areas and in conservative areas in western Romania, and was the first choice of Romanian expat voters in Italy and came second in Spain.

The election results were a disappointment for Prime Minister’s Ludovic Orban Liberals and even the Social Democrats who came first but find themselves struggling to find allies.

The party had some public exposure this year in well-organized anti-mask protests and in small Romanian towns and villages where it tapped into social conservatism and disillusion with the mainstream parties.

The party whose acronym AUR means gold in Romanian is headed by leaders who are also openly nationalist, opposed to Romania’s ethnic Hungarian population and seek reunification with the Republic of Moldova..

“’We are the natural ally, the defender and promoter of the church which is under growing attack. We will fight for …. a greater Romania,” Tarziu said.


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