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FRANCOPHONIE - 30 years since joining the International Organization of La Francophonie (OIF), Romania is a champion of promoting La Francophonie and its values, Romania's president Klaus Iohannis said on Thursday in the opening statement of the conference marking this special moment. President Iohannis said OIF's plans can only be achieved in a space of peace and stability. The promotion of peace, democracy and human rights, as well as protecting the environment and managing climate change have become top concerns for the whole world which can only be efficiently tackled through international cooperation and concerted effort. Attending the international conference in Bucharest was also Prime Minister Nicolae Ciucă, who said that education is key to young French-speaking people who are interested in securing access to jobs and living in a healthy environment. Attending the event in Bucharest was also OIF Secretary General, Louise Mushikiwabo.
BYSTROYE - Ukraine has provided neighboring Romania with a partial consent for starting measurements on the Chilia branch of the Danube River starting Friday. The measurements are to be conducted on the sector between kilometers 22 and 116 only during the day. Transport Minister Sorin Grindeanu said that during previous talks with Ukrainian officials he asked that measurements on the Chilia branch of the Danube should start at kilometer 11. It is the Romanian official's opinion that, considering that European Commission representatives have supported Romania's requests, it is in the interest of both countries that light be shed on Ukraine's dredging operations on the Chilia branch and the Bystroye canal. The Danube is a major transport route for Ukraine, which in the wake of the Russian invasion has been trying to export its grain and other foodstuffs using this river. Bucharest fears the works might have a negative impact on the ecosystems of the Danube Delta, a UNESCO World Heritage protected site. Ukraine's Infrastructure Minister said that, after the dredging of the Bystroye Canal, its depth increased from 3.9 to 6.5 meters.
MOLDOVA - The Moldovan Parliament on Thursday passed a draft law on replacing the phrasing "Moldovan language" with "Romanian language" in every piece of legislation in the Republic of Moldova, including the Constitution. The vote received a standing ovation in the plenary sitting from Action and Solidarity MPs, while their Socialist and Communist peers displayed slogans referring to the Moldovan language. The Romanian Foreign Ministry has hailed the new law, which it says has a deep symbolic meaning because it restores scientific truth regarding the official language of the Republic of Moldova and reasserts the status of the Romanian language as the official language of Moldova. Additionally, the law confirms the communion of language, history and culture Romania and Moldova share. The adoption of this law also reflects that maturity of Moldovan society and its adherence to the community of values underlying the European Union. Today's decision further consolidates bilateral relations between Romania and the Republic of Moldova, which are transparent in an open and robust cooperation focusing on the democratic reformation of the Republic of Moldova and its integration in the European Union, a Romanian Foreign Ministry release reads.
VISA WAIVER - The Democratic Majority Whip Richard Durbin and US senator Jeanne Shaheen, chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on Europe and Regional Security Cooperation, have submitted a draft law recommending the inclusion of Romania in the Visa Waiver program, the Romanian Embassy in Washington has announced. The initiative follows a visit the two officials paid to Romania last month. The two officials highlighted Romania's major role at NATO and EU levels, also underscoring the close relations with the United States. Romania's Ambassador in Washington, Andrei Muraru, described the draft law as the strongest legislative signal Romania has received from the Americans. Visa Waiver is a program run by the Federal Government allowing citizens from member countries to travel to the USA for tourism, business or in transit up for periods up to 90 days without requiring a visa. (VP)
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