May 11, 2022 UPDATE

may 11, 2022 update Click here for a news update

Chisinau – Two Romanian journalists from the Digi 24 television station were released following diplomatic actions by officials in Bucharest, after being detained by the so-called security forces from the pro-Russian separatist region of Transnistria, in the east of the Republic of Moldova (ex-Soviet state with a majority Romanian-speaking population). The two were in the region for professional reasons and, on Tuesday, they could not be contacted by their colleagues. According to the Foreign Ministry, the Romanian embassy in Chisinau urgently undertook multi-channel procedures and obtained, after only a few hours, their release. They were escorted safely to Chisinau, where they are now safe, and from where they will return to Romania. The Foreign Ministry asks journalists interested in going to the Transnistrian region of the Republic of Moldova to contact the ministry in advance and to avoid traveling in the next period. Transnistria de facto went out of the control of the central authorities after an armed conflict that left behind hundreds of dead and that was stopped following the intervention of Russian troops on the side of the separatists in 1992, less than a year after Chisinau had declared its independence. The former Russian President Boris Yeltsin has pledged to withdraw troops from Transnistria since the 1999 OSCE summit in Istanbul. Some 1,500 Russian military and important arsenals are said to still be there.

 

Covid-19 - The 4th COVID-19 vaccine dose will be available on request in Romania, in vaccination centers and family physician practices, as of May 16. According to the health ministry, only Pfizer vaccines can be administered, to people over 18 who have received 3 doses of mRNA vaccines, and at least 4 months after they have received the 3rd dose. Meanwhile, the health ministry announced 705 new COVID-19 cases and 7 related deaths in 24 hours. 144 COVID patients are currently in intensive care.

 

Eurovision - WRS soloist, with the song "Llamame", will represent Romania on Thursday in the second semifinal of the Eurovision 2022 contest, organized in Turin, Italy. Romania's best performances at the Eurovision contest were: twice the third place (Luminiţa Anghel & Sistem - Kyiv, 2005; Paula Seling and Ovi - Oslo, 2010) and once the fourth place (Mihai Trăistariu - Athens, 2006). The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has announced that no Russian artist will take part in this year's Eurovision Song Contest, as this would "discredit the competition". In Turin, the Republic of Moldova is represented by the band Zdob and Zdub, already qualified to the final, with a song about the train that connects Chisinau to Bucharest, the lyrics being about the communion of history, culture and destiny between the two Romanian states.

 

Ukraine – Ukraine's reconstruction plan, tougher sanctions against Russia and support for Moldova’s, Ukraine’s and Georgia's aspirations to join the EU were among the topics addressed by the Romanian Senate Speaker Florin Citu on Wednesday at a meeting with his Polish counterpart, Tomasz Grodzki. The two also discussed in Warsaw the intentions of Sweden and Finland to join NATO. Florin Citu announced that, after his visit to Poland, he will go to the Republic of Moldova.

 

Meeting - On Wednesday, the Romanian Foreign Minister Bogdan Aurescu attended a ministerial meeting of the Global Anti-ISIS/Daesh Coalition, hosted by Morocco, in cooperation with the US, in Marrakech. He informed that Romania would launch a Fund for the Future of Africa through Peace, Education and Development and reiterated, in his speech, Romania's commitment to supporting the specific activities of the coalition, both within its Forces and through its national contribution to support efforts for stabilization and assistance for development to those states affected by ISIS/Daesh actions. He reiterated Romania's interest in ensuring the security and stability of the Middle East and Africa, "where there is an increase in the terrorist phenomenon", and highlighted the "firm" support for the African states in the Sahel region, which are engaged in fighting ISIS / Daesh and other extremist organizations.

 

Tennis – The Romanian tennis player Gabriela Ruse sustained an outright defeated in front of the Polish Iga Swiatek, the world leader, score 6-3, 6-0, on Wednesday, in the second round of the WTA 1,000 tournament in Rome, which has total prizes worth 2,527,250 Euros. Swiatek will play in the Round of 16 against the Belarusian Victoria Azarenka. Ruse will continue in the doubles, together with the Ukrainian Marta Kostiuk, and will play in the Round of 16 against the Russians Veronika Kudermetova/Anastasia Pavliucenkova.

 

Offshore Law – The bill amending the Offshore Law, which will green-light gas exploitation in the Black Sea, was adopted on Wednesday by the Romanian senators, with 91 votes for and 13 against. Except for the AUR (Alliancce for the Union of Romanians) senators, all political groups were in favor of the bill, which will next go to the Chamber of Deputies, which is a decision-making body. The representatives of the governing coalition, who proposed it, say the law is a much more balanced option than the one passed four years ago. Tax changes have now been introduced in favor of the companies concerned, and dependence on Russian gas would be significantly reduced in a few years’ time. The Energy Minister, Virgil Popescu, underlined that by amending the current law, investments in the area will be unblocked and investments in deep onshore exploitation will be accelerated. Also Romania’s energy security will be ensured in case of an energy crisis, and the country will be able to become a regional energy security provider, after it will produce more than it will consume. According to the project, the Romanian state will have the right of preemption for the acquisition of natural gas. The national state-owned company Romgaz - the largest gas producer in Romania - and the Austrians from OMV will extract gas from the Black Sea in the coming years.

 

Corruption - The former head of the Fiscal Anti-Fraud General Directorate in Bucharest, Georgiana Popa, has been sent to court for influence peddling. She is under house arrest after being caught red-handed on March 29 while receiving 100,000 Euros. According to the National Anticorruption Directorate, Georgiana Popa has repeatedly claimed this amount from a former director of the Fiscal Anti-Fraud General Directorate, a witness in the case. She claimed that she would give the money to an anti-corruption prosecutor, who was supposed to give a solution favorable to the witness in a criminal case in which he was being investigated. (LS)


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Publicat: 2022-05-11 19:56:00
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