24 AUGUST 1985, Page 22

Romanian prisoners

Sir: The best-known Romanian political prisoner, Father Gheorghe Calciu- Dumitreasa, has now been allowed to emigrate, after 22 years in Communist jails and one extra year under harsh house arrest. This due to countless interventions from Western governments, organisations, churches and publications. There are, un- fortunately, hundreds of other political and

religious prisoners in Romania, ten years after the Helsinki agreements on human rights. Here are some outstanding cases:

Radu Filipescu, 28, an electronic en- gineer, serving a ten-year sentence for distributing anti-Ceausescu leaflets without advocating violence. Young people should especially ask for his release, as 1985 has ben designated, on Romania's initiative, as 'International Youth Year'.

Laszlo Buzas and Erno Borbely, ethnic Hungarian intellectuals serving sentences of up to eight years for 'political offences'. (A Roman Catholic priest of Hungarian origin, Father Geza Palfi, was beaten to death by the Securiatate secret police in April 1984 for asking, from the pulpit, that Christmas should not be made a working day — thus becoming Romania's 'Popieluszko' before the Polish martyr's death.) Dorel Caterama, 35, a Seventh Day Adventist, sentenced in 1982 to ten years' imprisonment for 'currency smuggling', whose sentence was increased on appeal, in 1983, to 14 years and who is now being held incommunicado.

Horia Georgescu

36A Arterberry Road, London SW20