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May 29, 2024 UPDATE

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Newsflash
Newsflash

, 29.05.2024, 20:00

Elections – The president of the Permanent Electoral Authority, Toni Greblă, has made a series of clarifications about the ballot on 9th of June, when Romanian voters are casting their votes in the local and European Parliament elections, held on the same day for the first time. Over 200,000 candidates have registered in the competition for the local elections and 494 for the European Parliament. He said there will be almost 19,000 polling stations around the country and 915 abroad, double compared to the previous elections. The foreign ministry sent as early as last week the materials needed for the voting process to the Romanian diplomatic missions and consular offices abroad. The list of voting stations abroad is available on the foreign ministry’s internet page in the section dedicated to the European Parliament elections. In another move, the Central Electoral Bureau said it would provide real-time updates online about voter turnout on election day.

 

Measles – Romania has recorded over 16,500 new measles cases and 16 casualties in the last year, said the Public Health Institute in Bucharest. Most infections were reported in the centre of the country and in the capital city. The World Health Organization has published a report warning that measles cases are growing at an alarming rate around the world, amid a drop in vaccination rates. At over 60,000, the number of cases recorded in Europe this year is higher than in all of 2023. More than 56,000 cases were reported in the first three months of the year alone, as well as 4 deaths. According to the World Health Organization, Romania has the 5th highest rate of measles infections in Europe and the highest in the European Union, with some 240 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.

 

Bookfest – The 17th edition of the Bookfest International Book Fair was officially opened on Wednesday in Bucharest, in a ceremony attended by high-ranking officials from Romania and the neighboring Republic of Moldova (ex-Soviet state with a majority Romanian-speaking population). The fair brings together 200 exhibitors and 150 publishing houses from Romania and the Republic of Moldova, the guest of honor this year. Until Sunday, lovers of the written word will be able to attend over 400 events: book launches, debates, thematic workshops, games for children and a raffle with surprise prizes. A project co-financed by the Ministry of Culture, Bookfest International Book Fair is organized by the Association of Romanian Book Publishers. At the previous international editions, the guest countries were: Spain, Hungary, France, the German-speaking countries (Germany, Austria, Switzerland), Poland, the Czech Republic, Israel, Sweden, the United States, Great Britain, Japan and Italy. Bookfest has local editions in Timisoara (west), Cluj-Napoca (north-west), Târgu Mures, Brasov (center) and another international edition in Chişinău, the capital of the Republic of Moldova.

 

Emissions – The European Council and the European Parliament adopted the final form of the zero-emissions industry law, which offers advantages for investments in clean technologies. According to Radio Romania’s correspondent in Brussels, through this document, the EU aims to obtain, by 2030, at least 40% of the production of clean technologies that it needs to be done on the territory of the EU. In order to reduce emissions, the law also provides for carbon dioxide storage projects, and European companies that produce oil and gas have very clear obligations to ensure these deposits for injection. The target is 50 million tons of carbon dioxide injected into these deposits by 2030. And, as Romania is the second European producer, domestic companies have the obligation to make available deposits for the injection of 9 million cubic meters.

 

Chişinău – The visit of the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, to the Republic of Moldova is “a strong sign of support”, the Moldovan President Maia Sandu said on Wednesday. During a press conference with Antony Blinken, she thanked the United States and other partners for the support given to the Republic of Moldova in order to strengthen energy security, modernize the agricultural sector and support exports. “Through unity and with the support of our partners, we will stand by our people and move forward,” Maia Sandu said.

 

Acquittal – In Romania, the High Court of Cassation and Justice definitively acquitted the former Economy Minister, Adriean Videanu, and the businessman Ioan Niculae for setting up an organized crime group and for embezzlement in the Romgaz case. The damage was estimated by the prosecutors at over 60 million Euros. The defendants had also received an acquittal at the trial court, in December 2022, on the grounds that “the fact does not exist”, and on Wednesday, the panel of five judges rejected, with a majority, the appeals submitted by the Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism – DIICOT and the Romgaz Company. DIICOT claimed that Ioan Niculae’s company would have illegally received gas from Romania’s domestic production at very low prices, i.e. approximately a quarter of the market price. (LS)

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