Romanian flings himself from parliament balcony

December 24, 2010 02:59

BUCHAREST, Romania — A Romanian television engineer apparently distraught that budget cuts had reduced benefits for his autistic teenage son dived more than 20 feet (about seven meters) from a balcony onto the floor of Romania's parliament Thursday, then shouted "Freedom!" as emergency workers took him out on a stretcher.

The man's cry echoed those heard during the 1989 revolution that toppled communism — a revolt in which 1,300 people died. Romanians are commemorating the 21st anniversary of an uprising in which authorities shot unarmed protesters.

Shortly after Prime Minister Emil Boc greeted lawmakers, Adrian Sobaru hit the floor with a thud that reverberated through the chamber. No one else was injured, and Sobaru's injuries were reportedly not life-threatening.

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