Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Romania plans congress to elect new president
PARTY ELECTIONS – The leaders of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Romania (ALDE), a junior partner of the Social Democrats in the ruling coalition, convene today to set a date for the congress in which the party will elect its president. ALDE is currently headed by the Senate Speaker, Calin Popescu Tariceanu, and the Environment Minister, Daniel Constantin. According to news agencies, the two disagree over the date of the congress. Tariceanu wants quick preparations for an election in late April, whereas Constantin argues that party elections should begin in local branches, and the newly elected county leaders should decide who the next party president will be.
ORLY AIRPORT ATTACK – Flights have been resumed at Orly Airport, near Paris, one day after a shooting triggered the temporary closing down of two terminals, AFP reports. An armed man was shot dead on Saturday while attempting to steal a soldier’s gun on that airport. According to the authorities, Ziyed Ben Belgacem, a 39-year old Frenchman held an air pistol at the soldier’s head, saying he wanted to die for Allah. Earlier the same day the man had been involved in a shooting and car theft.
PERU FLOODS – More than 70 people died in the worst floods and landslides in 20 years in Peru, the authorities have announced. The heavy rainfalls that lasted for several days have caused flooding and mudslides in large parts of the country, news agencies reported. A state of emergency has been declared in over 800 towns. According to authorities, this year’s rainy season brought precipitations 10 times more intense than usual. Over 500,000 people were evacuated as floods washed away homes, and many are stranded and depend on bottled water deliveries, after drinking water sources were contaminated or supply was cut off.
CHUCK BERRY DIES – The American rock legend Chuck Berry died on Saturday at the age of 90. During a 7-decade long career the guitarist, singer and songwriter refined rhythm and blues music and enriched it with elements that made rock&roll an independent music style. Chuck Berry’s first hit, the 1955 "Maybellene", was followed by other famous songs like "Roll Over Beethoven", "Sweet Little Sixteen" and "Johnny B Goode". In 1984 he won a Grammy for lifetime achievement, and in 1986 he was one of the first musicians inducted in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Chick Berry was planning a studio album release in 2017, after a 38-year break.
RUGBY EUROPE – Romania is playing against Georgia in Bucharest today, in the last game in the current season of Rugby Europe Championship. The match is seen as a virtual final of the competition, given that the Georgians lead the standings with 18 points, followed by Romania with 15. Rugby Europe Championship has replaced, as of this year, the former European Nations Cup, the second-tier continental rugby competition after the famous Six Nations. So far in the competition, Romania won against Belgium and Russia away from home and against Spain on home turf, but surprisingly lost its away match against Germany. The performance in Rugby Europe Championship is also taken into account for qualification to the 2019 World Cup in Japan.
GYMNASTICS WORLD CUP – The Romanian gymnast Catalina Ponor is competing today in the beam and floor finals of the World Cup in Baku, Azerbaidjan. She is the only member of the Romanian team to have reached the finals of this competition. 120 athletes from 21 countries are taking part in the Gymnastics World Cup in Baku, which marks the start of preparations for the European competitions to be held in the north-western Romanian city of Cluj-Napoca in April.