UKRAINE EU officials sent their congratulations to the winner of the presidential elections in Ukraine, Volodimir Zelenski, noting that the vote emphasised commitment to democratic values in this country at war, situated on the borders of the Union. The President of Romania, Klaus Iohannis, also congratulated Volodimir Zelenski. Iohannis voiced his confidence that through dialogue and joint efforts, the two presidents will be able to contribute to consolidating and diversifying the relations between the two countries, in support of Ukraine’s territorial integrity, security and modernisation. These developments will benefit all the citizens of Ukraine, including the Romanian minority, reads the message sent by President Iohannis. In turn, the Russian PM Dmitri Medvedev said that Moscow has an opportunity to improve relations with Ukraine with this new presidency, although he added he does not want to have “illusions” in this respect. The television actor Volodimir Zelenski Sunday won the presidential election in Ukraine by a landslide, defeating the outgoing president Petro Poroshenko.
TERRORISM The government of Sri Lanka ordered a state of emergency beginning Monday at midnight, for public security reasons. The announcement comes in the aftermath of the Easter Sunday bomb attacks that killed nearly 300 and wounded another 500 people. According to a government spokesperson, the attacks were coordinated with the help of an international terrorist organisation. The victims include 37 foreign tourists. The police announced that 24 people have been arrested. Within a few hours on Sunday, several blasts were reported in 3 churches and 4 luxury hotels in this Indian Ocean island. Schools and universities will stay closed, and Stock Exchange operations suspended. The airport will also remain closed. The international community, Romania included, has condemned the attacks in Sri Lanka.
BORDER The relevant authorities in Romania and the Republic of Moldova have put together an action plan to streamline border crossing during the Easter holiday. The plan includes increased personnel in checkpoints, the use of all lanes and coordination with local Border Police units. The Romanian Border Police also called on the corresponding institutions in Bulgaria and Hungary to increase the staff in checkpoints, if necessary. The Romanians working abroad are coming home for Easter, and checkpoints are rather crowded these days. More than 4,000 border police will be on duty every day to ensure efficient checks on national borders during this period.
IMMUNISATION Over 82,000 measles cases were reported in Europe, physicians warned during the World Immunisation Week which started on Monday. Of the 72 deaths caused by this disease in Europe, 62 were in Romania. Experts have once again warned that immunisation saves millions of lives every year and is recognised as the most efficient healthcare intervention. Last week, over 100 cases of measles were confirmed in 12 counties in Romania and in Bucharest, according to the latest data made public by the National Centre for Transmittable Disease Monitoring and Control. The largest number of cases was among unvaccinated children.
(translated by: Ana-Maria Popescu)