Romania's Social Democrats quit the coalition government on Thursday in protest at the sacking of a minister.
The centrist Democrat-Liberals (PD-L), the Social Democrats' coalition partners, can rule alone for a few weeks but will have to seek parliament's approval for new ministers and their survival will depend on support from the opposition.
The centre-left coalition went into crisis this week after Prime Minister Emil Boc suddenly sacked interior minister Dan Nica and proposed a replacement from his own PD-L party before a Nov. 22 presidential election.
On Thursday President Traian Basescu, who has links to the PD-L, approved Nica's dismissal.
"All PSD ministers, supporting Dan Nica, are announcing their resignation from government," PSD leader Mircea Geoana told reporters after an emergency party meeting. "The president succeeded in triggering a political crisis."
Observers said the political standoff reflected tactical manoeuvring by the two ruling parties before the presidential ballot, rather than policy differences.
Boc's PD-L and their leftist partners have ruled since they took power in December, sparring over cost-cutting reforms and trading blame for economic woes.
"The crisis is theirs now," Nica told reporters.
Last Mod: 01 Ekim 2009, 16:09