Romania loses European Women's Handball Championship semi-finals to Russia, plays for bronze on Sunday
EU SUMMIT – The EU long-term budget, the single market, migration and foreign relations, the Eurozone and Brexit were the key topics discussed in the winter European Council in Brussels, which ended on Friday. In the summit conclusions, the European Council says more needs to be done to ensure that the Single Market provides a solid underpinning for an outward-looking, confident and more autonomous European Union in a challenging global environment. With respect to migration, the EU leaders plead for vigilance on all existing and emerging routes, in particular in view of recent increases on the Western and Eastern Mediterranean routes. President Klaus Iohannis, who represented Romania in the summit, emphasised the importance of the cohesion policy and of the common agricultural policy in the new multi-annual budget framework. On the sidelines of the meeting, the President of Romania held talks with the British PM, Theresa May, to discuss the Brexit deal and the situation of the Romanian community in the UK. Klaus Iohannis mentioned that the withdrawal agreement would be a major element in guaranteeing the rights of those who live, work or study in that country. In turn, Theresa May appreciated the dialogue with President Klaus Iohannis, considering Britain’s prospective withdrawal from the EU during Romania’s presidency of the EU Council, in the first half of 2019.
SWINE FEVER – African swine fever cases are currently reported in over 300 villages in 18 counties in Romania. The over 1,000 outbreaks affect 18 pig farms, and 500 other cases involve wild pigs. According to the National Veterinary Authority, 12 outbreaks have been closed so far in Satu-Mare County in the north-west, where the virus was first reported in Romania, last July. Veterinary authorities remind citizens that in order to prevent the virus from spreading, all susceptible animals must be culled, and owners will be compensated for their losses in keeping with the relevant legislation. African swine fever is not transmitted to humans, but it has major economic consequences.
ATTACK – A 4th victim of the shooting in Strasbourg, who had been in a critical state since Tuesday night, died on Friday, Paris prosecutors announced. The perpetrator of the Strasbourg Christmas market attack was shot dead by the police on Thursday night. More than 700 police took part in the extensive manhunt operation.
SPORTS – Romania Friday night lost the semi-finals of the European Women’s Handball Championship to defending Olympic champions Russia, 22-28. The team’s star player and leader Cristina Neagu, who is the highest scoring player in the history of the European championships, did not play on Friday, because of an injury in the match against Hungary on Wednesday, which Romania lost. The match for the European bronze is scheduled for Sunday. The national women’s handball team has nonetheless ensured their ticket to the World Championship in Japan next year.
(translated by: Ana-Maria Popescu)