The Social Democratic Party meets on Monday to discuss the membership of the new government.
Government. The National Committee of the Social Democratic
Party, the senior partner in the ruling coalition in Romania, meets on Monday
to discuss the membership of the new government. President Klaus Iohannis
accepted the nomination of the Social Democratic MEP Viorica Dancila for the
position of prime minister at the proposal of the Social Democrats and their
ruling partners, the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats. The Social Democrat
leader and speaker of the Chamber of Deputies Liviu Dragnea has said Parliament
will meet in extraordinary session on the 29th of January to vote on
the new government and adopt the governing platform. Outgoing Social Democrat
prime minister Mihai Tudose resigned almost a week ago after losing his party's
political support. On Friday, the minister for European funds Marius Nica also
tendered his resignation.
Protests. Tens of thousands of people protested
on Saturday night in Bucharest and other big cities across Romania against the
overhaul of the justice laws adopted by Parliament last month and the recent
tax measures taken by the government. People from around the country came to
Bucharest to join the protest. Traffic in the centre of Bucharest was disrupted
and some incidents were reported between protesters and the security forces.
The protesters gathered in the University Square before setting off on a march
towards Parliament Palace, which they picketed for dozens of minutes. They
shouted slogans criticising the government and the ruling coalition and
demanding an independent justice system. In solidarity with the protesters in
Romania, many Romanians living abroad took to the streets in several European
cities, such as Milan, Budapest, Madrid and Paris.
The Romanian foreign minister Teodor Melescanu on Monday attends a meeting of
the EU External Affairs Council in Brussels. Talks are expected to focus on the
situation in Libya, a post-Cotonou agreement and the Middle East peace process.
The EU foreign ministers will also attend a working lunch with the Palestinian
president Mahmoud Abbas. On the sidelines of the council's meeting, another
working lunch will be held with Werner Hoyer, the president of the European
Investment Bank. The Cotonou Agreement signed in 2000 is the most comprehensive
partnership agreement between the European Union and developing countries. It
has been the framework for the Union's relations with 79 countries in Africa,
including 48 from Sub-Saharan Africa. The goal of the agreement is to reduce
and eventually eradicate poverty.
Germany. The German Social
Democrats decided on Sunday to start official talks with Angela Merkel to form
a new government, the DPA news agency reports. Around 600 party delegates met
in a special congress in Bonn to discuss a new alliance with Merkel's
Conservatives. Commentators say this positive outcome, almost 4 months after
parliamentary elections in Germany, paves the way for the formation of a new
government around Easter.
Tourism. Romania took part in the International Travel Fair in
Madrid with a national stand whose promotional message was Romania - A Tourist
Destination for 365 Days a Year. To celebrate the Centenary of the Great Union
of 1918, the Romanian stand featured a replica of the gates to the citadel of
Alba Iulia, in the centre. Throughout the fair, visitors to the Romanian stand
have been able to find out more about the Great Union anniversary and about
Romanian tourist offers, such as cultural packages, nature tourism, rural
tourism, city break packages, active and adventure tourism and spa and wellness
tourism. Also, six Romanian travel companies attended a travel fair in
Helsinki, the biggest in Scandinavia, which came to an end on Sunday. These
companies promoted luxury tourism and ecological tourism, local products,
packages focused on nature, photography and cycling, as well as experience
exchanges in agriculture and Untold Festival, the largest electronic music
festival in Romania that won the Best Major European Festival award in 2015.
Australian Open. Tenth seed
Romanian pair Irina Begu and Monica Niculescu on Sunday reached the women's
doubles quartefinals at the Australian Open after their opponents, the
Ukrainian-Australian pair Nadia Kichenok and Anastasia Rodionova withdrew. Begu and Niculescu will
next face either the American-Czech pair Nicole Melichar and Kveta Peschke or
the all-American pair Jennifer Brady and Vania King. The Romanian-Brazilian
pair Sorana Cirstea and Beatriz Haddad Maia lost in the fourth round to
the Czech pair Lucie
Safarova and Barbora Strycova. On Monday, top seed and world no. 1 Simona Halep
plays against Japan's Naomi Osaka in the fourth round. Halep advanced to
this stage of the competition after a dramatic 3h and 45 min match against the
American player Lauren Davis, who is no. 76 in the world.
Weather. Meteorologists have issued a yellow code alert for snow in half of Romania's counties in the
south-west, south, centre and south-east. The alert is in place starting
tonight until Monday night.