Constantin Stere (1865 – 1936)

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Bessarabian politician; member, since high school, of the nationalist movement in Russia; arrested for revolutionary activity, he was tried, convicted and jailed in Siberia (1886-1892). After his liberation he came to Iaşi where he attended the Law Faculty; he began a teaching career, becoming a university professor and even a rector. During the German occupation he settled in Bucharest; he opposed any alliance with the Tsarist Empire. Alexandru Marghiloman noted in volume III of his 1918 political notes: “Stere warmly spoke to me about a project of personal alliance with Emperor Wilhelm (…). A strong Romania cannot be done with a monarchy that trembles in front of the parties. Our dynasty lacks the power of tradition. It has to draw power from the outside”. Being Bessarabian, he participated in the negotiations held in Bucharest with the representatives of the Country Council, in February/ March 1918, regarding the finding of the right moment for the union of Bessarabia with Romania. He went to Chisinau where he engaged in negotiations with all the factions; he was elected member of the Country Council (27 March – 25 November 1918), then, after the union, its president (2 – 25 April 1918). He had a major contribution in the negotiation and realization of the union of Bessarabia with Romania, in the dynamisation, in only a few days, of the Bessarabian political life and in deciding the union. He was decorated by King Ferdinand, on March 30 / April 12, 1918, with the order “Steaua României” (the Star of Romania), being forgiven for the mistakes in his past and his role in the Union of Bessarabia with Romania being acknowledged. He was elected deputy of Soroca in the first Parliament of Greater Romania.