Despite the changes taking place in the entire Eastern Bloc, Ceaușescu did not want to carry
out the reforms that were increasingly demanded by society.
One of the main factors triggering the revolution in Romania was the order of the state
authorities to leave the parish of Timișoara by the pastor of the Hungarian parish of László
Tőkés. He was a symbolic figure of resistance against Ceaușescu's power. He informed the
faithful of the decision of the authorities and refused to execute it. On 16 December 1989, the
militia wanted to remove the pastor, but the gathered believers prevented it. The next day, the
police forced their way into the church to open fire on the demonstrators and arrested Tőkés.
Similarly, they were struggling with the demonstration under the seat of the Provincial Office
and the Party Committee. More and more demonstrators gathered in the city and part of the
army went to their side. Further strikes and fighting with Securitate troops broke out and the
atmosphere of rebellion spread to the rest of Romania.
On 19 December in a special TV speech, Ceaușescu stated that the riots in Timișoara were the
responsibility of "revolvers, revisionists and foreign secret services". On 21 December in the
capital of Ceaușescu, he delivered a speech from the balcony of the Central Committee seat in
the presence of tens of thousands of people. However, instead of applause, he faced hostility.
Shouts sounded: 'away with Ceaușescu' were heard. The demonstrators and the defenders of
the regime and Securitate fights started. Seeing that the army was on the side of the rebellion,
the dictator and his wife decided to escape. However, they were arrested and brought before a
military tribunal. On 25 December, the death penalty was imposed, carried and documented
by the cameras (they were shot). Nobody expected the dictator to fall so quickly. Ilon Iliescu,
the representative of the Romanian Communist Party, held the interim position of President. It
adopted a decree on the registration and operation of political parties, and the clashes
themselves came to an end.