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June 22, 2024 UPDATE

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Newsflash
Newsflash

, 22.06.2024, 20:00

 

WEATHER Weather experts in Romania have issued a number of alerts for Sunday, June 23, concerning extreme heat and significant heat stress in most of the country. A code red alert for extreme heat will be in place the south of Romania. The heat wave will be persistent and temperatures will be extremely high for the 5th consecutive day, reaching 38-39 degrees Celsius, with lows around 20 degrees.

 

EMPLOYMENT The number of public sector employees in Romania in April 2024 was 1,292,549,up 3,009 since the previous month, according to data made public by the finance ministry. Of the over 826,000 employees in the central public administration, more than 600,000 were working in institutions fully funded from the state budget. The largest number of such positions was reported in the education ministry (302,230), followed by the interior ministry (123,859), defence ministry (73,818), finance ministry (24,762) and health ministry (18,156). Working in local public administration institutions this April were 466,308 people, of whom 286,443 in institutions fully funded from local budgets and 179,865 in institutions fully or partly financed from other revenues.

 

DISINFORMATION The Romanian foreign minister Luminiţa Odobescu and the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken signed in Washington a Memorandum of Understanding on countering information manipulation. Among other things, the document provides for the coordinated development of relevant strategies, as well as for the involvement of independent media, civil society and the academia in fighting disinformation. According to a news release, the two officials have also reviewed the progress made by Romania towards inclusion in the Visa Waiver Programme, and have reconfirmed their commitment to close cooperation in view of reaching this goal as soon as possible. During her visit to the US, organised in the context of celebrating 20 years since Romania joined NATO, the Romanian diplomacy chief also had meetings with the National Security Council senior director for Europe Michael Carpenter, with whom she discussed items on the Romanian-US economic and security agenda, as well as regional developments and preparations for the forthcoming NATO Summit in Washington. Also, during a meeting with Samantha Power, USAID administrator, Luminiţa Odobescu highlighted the two countries’ shared interest in strengthening the resilience of partners in the Black Sea region, with a focus on the Republic of Moldova.

 

ORGANISED CRIME The Romanian interior minister Cătălin Predoiu had a meeting with the British ambassador to Bucharest, Giles Matthew Portman. The talks focused on measures to be taken in order to curb transnational organised crime. According to the interior ministry, another topic approached by the 2 officials was improving the efficiency of police work, including institutional reforms, so as to handle current challenges. Predoiu highlighted the very good cooperation between the two countries, as well as the opportunities to further develop it under the Romanian-British Strategic Partnership. The Romanian official pointed out that border protection is a priority for Romania, whose goal is to strengthen and protect the Schengen area. Mr. Predoiu also mentioned that the implementation of the Pact on migration and asylum would be both a challenge for the Member States, and an opportunity to improve national migration and asylum management systems.

 

FESTIVAL Sibiu, in central Romania, is hosting the 31st International Theatre Festival (FITS). For 10 days, the public can choose from as many as 830 events, including theatre performances, music, dance, circus, exhibitions and public reading sessions, which bring together over 5,000 artists from 82 countries. Internationally acclaimed actors, directors and writers such as John Malkovich, Tim Robbins, Pippo delBono and Neil LaBute are also expected to attend. Many of the international productions in FITS may be viewed online this year, on the online platform “Scena Digitală” of the Sibiu “Radu Stanca” National Theatre, the main organiser of FITS 2024. “In terms of the number of participants, the number of partners, the diversity of projects in the festival, I believe this is the most complex cultural event in Romania and a major one at international level,” said the culture minister Raluca Turcan, who attended several events in the Festival, including the opening of the Romania-Poland Cultural Season, the first in the history of the 2 countries’ bilateral relations.

 

SWIMMING The Romanian swimmer David Popovici defended his gold at the 200m freestyle event in the European Aquatics Championships in Belgrade, after also winning the 100m freestyle race. The next challenge for the Romanian swimmer is the Olympic competition, in which Romania will be represented by 93 athletes. The latest one to qualify is the wrestler Răzvan Arnăuţ, in the 60kg Greco-Roman category, after the International Olympic Committee disqualified several Russian and Byelorussian athletes. (AMP)

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