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August 23-27 2021
Romania prepares for a new wave of Coronavirus
The daily number of Coronavirus infections in Romania is rising, especially in the capital, which is unfortunately leading by far in the number of identified cases. On Thursday, the authorities have reported one thousand new daily cases, for the first time since mid-May. The most cases, over 80%, are now among the unvaccinated. As a result, the government issued an executive order to allow the elderly or home bound people to be vaccinated at home by family physicians. The authorities are preparing for a new wave of the epidemic, which is most dangerous for children. As school is set to start on September 13, head of state Klaus Iohannis reiterated that vaccination is the only effective solution to fill up classrooms once again for as long as possible. He called on all parties involved, especially the Ministry of Education and the Health Ministry, as well as local public authorities, to work together to quickly apply all measures that ensure the safety of children and teachers.
New decisions on Afghanistan
The Romanian armed forces are deploying 200 troops for evacuating and relocating the Afghan citizens that have worked for NATO missions in Afghanistan. The Romanians are being deployed this month for six months at the most. The decision was made on Wednesday by the Higher Defense Council. The members of the council decided to bring into the country to safety Afghan citizens such as journalists, human rights activists, or magistrates who are endangered by the rise to power of the Taliban. According to a presidential press release, NATO operations will continue to aim at transferring these persons from temporary bases in Kuwait and Qatar, relocating them to temporary bases in allied states, providing basic services. For Romania, the change of regime in Afghanistan could have security consequences, due to dangers posed by extremism, terrorism, drug and weapon trafficking, as well as illegal migration, as indicated by the presidential message. Bucharest will take all necessary measures, and will stay engaged in defending national interests and those of Romanian citizens, while staying engaged in solidarity with its partners and allies in the international effort to overcome the crisis. So far, about 40 Romanian citizens working in Afghanistan for private companies or international organizations who want to depart the country have been evacuated from Kabul on Romanian or allied aircraft.
Romanian president attends festivities for the 30th anniversary of Moldova's independence
The Romanian, Ukrainian, and Polish presidents, Klaus Iohannis, Volodimir Zelenski, and Andrzej Duda, attended on Friday in Chisinau the festivities to celebrate the independence of the Republic of Moldova. Independence from the Soviet Union, which took it over by force in 1940, was achieved on August 27, 1991 by an ample move of national liberation, similar to those all over the USSR. Tuesday was Ukraine's independence day, an event also attended by standing Moldovan president Maia Sandu. Moldova's relations with its neighbors revived after the victory in the elections of pro-Western politician Maia Sandu, in November last year, which unseated the pro-Russian faction in the elections in July. Romanian President Klaus Iohannis paid a visit to Chisinau in late December, right after Maia Sandu was sworn in. After the visit, Romania provided aid to Moldova, including protective gear and vaccines against the COVID-19 virus.
Romanian PM attends the launch of the Crimea Platform
Romania is, and will continue to be, a firm supporter of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity, firmly engaged in implementing a policy to reject the illegal annexation of Crime by the Russian Federation. This was the statement made on Monday in Kiev by Romanian PM Florin Citu, at the opening of the summit to launch the Crimea International Platform. At the same time, Romania supports Ukraine's bid to become part of the EU and NATO, said Citu. The inauguration of the new platform was also attended by Romania's Foreign Minister, Bogdan Aurescu. The Crimea Platform is an initiative meant to consolidate the policy to reject the illegal annexation of Crime by the Russian Federation, ultimately aimed at reintegrating the territory into Ukraine. Representatives of over 40 states have issued a final declaration condemning what they call the temporary occupation and illegal annexation of Crimea, and what they refer to as a direct challenge to international security. The document warns that the current militarization in the region undermines security and stability in the Black Sea area, denouncing Russia's efforts to legitimize the temporary occupation and illegal annexation, condemning human rights violations in the peninsula.
Sibiu hosts the International Theater Festival
Sibiu, a central Romanian city, continues until Sunday festivities marking the International Theater Festival, the biggest event dedicated to the stage in Romania. The festival, which opened on Friday, is in its 28th edition. The events included stage plays, dance and street shows, in historic venues, along concerts, conferences, exhibitions, workshops, and public readings. This year, because of the pandemic, the proceedings were paralleled online. The theme this year is Building Hope Together.
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