Suspended Romanian President Traian Basescu has retained his position following a referendum on his impeachment that failed to draw the required percentage of voters.
Sunday's referendum required half of the electorate to cast a ballot in order to be valid. Only 46 percent of voters turned out in 97 percent of polling stations, according to the central election bureau, thereby rendering the vote invalid.
"Romanians have rejected the coup staged by the 256 lawmakers led by [Prime Minister] Victor Ponta and [interim President] Crin Antonescu," Basescu said from his campaign headquarters minutes after polling ended, according to the AFP news agency.
Leftist Prime Minister Ponta, whose cabinet assumed power in Romania in April without elections, launched the referendum process in an attempt to oust Basescu, accusing the president of overstepping his authority.
tm, ncy/pfd (AFP, dpa)