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A roundup of domestic and international news
Budget. The Romanian Government is this week preparing the first budget adjustment in 2022, which has been described by the country's Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca as positive. The Ministries of Finance, Labour and European Projects are to get more money and so are the Ministries of Healthcare, Energy, Transport, Justice and Agriculture. The Ministries of the Interior, the Environment and Culture have seen their funds trimmed as Finance Minister Adrian Caciu has announced that a key priority are the measures the Executive has taken in order to boost the economy and support the citizens against the backdrop of a soaring inflation rate. Among the aforementioned measures there are a support scheme aimed at offsetting growing prices in gas and electricity, state subsidies for fuel consumption in agriculture as well as loans for farmers. Under the new measures, the consolidated budget deficit is estimated to exceed 16 billion euros, accounting for 5.8% of the GDP.
Protests. Police trade unionists took to the streets again on Tuesday, this time in front of the Ministry of Interior and in front of the Ministry of Labor, after picketing the Ministry of Finance last week. They claim that their rights and those of military pensioners are still ignored by the Government and demand a fair application of the salary law for budget employees, higher bonuses and the right meal tickets. The Minister of Labour, Marius Budai, talked to the protesters. According to Radio Romania News and Current Affairs, on Wednesday, the police unionists will picket the offices of the Government, of the Social Democratic Party and of the National Liberal Party.
Ukraine. An ammunition depot of the Russian army exploded on Tuesday in the occupied Crimea. Sources cited by the Russian media say that the explosion was caused by a fire and that there are no serious injuries. Recently, in Crimea, there have been several incidents of this type, including a series of simultaneous explosions at an air base. Kyiv has neither confirmed nor denied that the explosions were caused by attacks carried out by its forces. In another Russian-controlled area, in Donbas, Ukrainian forces bombed the headquarters of the Wagner Group, a mercenary organization controlled by the oligarch Evgeni Prigozhin, dubbed "Putin's chef". The Wagner Group was also involved in the Syrian civil war and conflicts in Africa. Its members have allegedly committed war crimes both in Syria, with at least one case documented by independent Russian media, and in Ukraine. Meanwhile, the Kyiv Parliament voted the extension of the state of emergency throughout the country for another 90 days.
Baccalaureate. Roughly 35 thousand students have registered for the autumn session of the national baccalaureate, which started on Tuesday. 22 thousand of them have graduated from high-school this year. The exam's final results are to be made public on September 3rd. The success rate in the first session of this exam held in July stood at 75%, the highest rate in the past 10 years.
Border-crossing. Over 1, 500, 000 people, Romanian and foreign nationals, crossed Romania's borders over August 12th and 15th the General Border Police Inspectorate has announced. The most intense traffic was reported at Romania's border with Hungary. 13 thousand Ukrainian nationals entered Romania on Monday 0.2% more than in the previous day, which brings up to 2 million the number of refugees that have crossed into Romania since the beginning of the conflict in February.
Covid. 3,600 new cases of Covid-19 were registered in 24 hours in Romania, which is less than a week ago. Most cases - over 400 - and the highest incidence rate, 7.3 per one thousand inhabitants - have been reported in Bucharest. Some 4000 patients are hospitalized, of whom 280 in intensive care. Also, 18 related deaths were reported, three of which from the previous reporting period.
Swimming. On Monday, Romanian swimmer David Popovici won gold in the 200 meter freestyle race of the European Aquatics Championships in Rome. Popovici, aged 17, the world's defending champion, ended the race in one minute, 42 seconds and 97 hundredths, a new world and European record. We recall that Popovici also walked away with gold from the 100 and 200 meter freestyle races of the World Championships in Budapest. The Romanian swimmer also got the title on Saturday night in the 100 meter freestyle race with a new world record of 46 seconds and 86 hundredths. David Popovici will be racing in the 400 meter event on Wednesday. (MI)
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