In Romania Citizens demonstrate a year after nightclub blaze tragedy

A local mayor, a number of civil servants and two firefighters have also been accused of negligence.

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A couple lights candles at the end of a march in the memory of the 64 people who were killed one year ago when Colectiv club caught fire during a rock concert, on October 30, 2016 in Bucharest play

A couple lights candles at the end of a march in the memory of the 64 people who were killed one year ago when Colectiv club caught fire during a rock concert, on October 30, 2016 in Bucharest

(AFP)
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Around 5,000 people took to the streets of Bucharest on Sunday, a year after a nightclub fire that killed 64 young people and triggered an unprecedented protest movement against the Romanian political class.

The blaze on October 30, 2015, blamed on fireworks and corruption that allowed the club to carry on opening despite lax fire safety, brought down the corruption-tainted administration of Social Democratic Victor Ponta.

"A year has passed, nothing has changed," read one banner carried by demonstrators who marched in silence from the city centre to the "Colectiv" nightclub where the tragedy took place.

Some were moved to tears while others lit candles and laid flowers in front of a monument inaugurated on Sunday in memory of the victims. Nearly 200 people were also injured in the fire.

"We hope that things are going to change, otherwise that would mean that there is no hope" for Romania, Eugen Iancu, the father of one young man who died in the blaze, told AFP.

He said he was still shocked by the situation in Romanian hospitals recalling that "most of the young people died because of bacteria" they were exposed to while being treated for their burns.

Romanians take part in a march in Bucharest in memory of the 64 people who were killed when the "Colectiv" nightclub caught fire during a rock concert play

Romanians take part in a march in Bucharest in memory of the 64 people who were killed when the "Colectiv" nightclub caught fire during a rock concert

(AFP)

Another demonstrator, Valentin, 38, was critical of the authorities' "indifference" and "corruption" and those he said "received money" to authorise the opening of the club despite inadequate safety standards.

President Klaus Iohannis, who laid a wreath of flowers earlier in the day, said he regretted that a year on "we still do not know who is responsible for this terrible accident".

Three managers at the club, which remains closed, and three people from a firm that installed the fireworks there have been charged with involuntary homicide. Their trial is due to start soon.

A local mayor, a number of civil servants and two firefighters have also been accused of negligence.

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