Romania: PM returns to Bucharest following surgery abroad

AP News
Posted: Jul 08, 2015 1:18 PM

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — Romania's prime minister, who is the subject of a corruption probe, has returned to Bucharest more than three weeks after having knee surgery in Turkey.

Victor Ponta was seen Wednesday morning entering the government offices on crutches. He plans to return to work Thursday, the government office said, but needs approval from President Klaus Iohannis who did not comment Wednesday.

Ponta, 42, underwent surgery on June 15 in Istanbul and has been criticized for his prolonged convalescence.

On June 5, prosecutors said he was suspected of conflict of interest, money laundering and tax evasion for work he did as a lawyer in 2007 to 2008 when he was a lawmaker. He denies wrongdoing and has refused to resign.

Iohannis, who is a political rival, has urged Ponta to resign several times and relations between the two have soured since the probe.

Ponta survived a vote to lift his immunity from some of the charges, and a no-confidence vote.