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DEFENSE - Romania's president, Klaus Iohannis, on Tuesday said that the presence of Portuguese military with the South-East Multinational Brigade in Caracal alongside other servicemen from North Macedonia and other NATO states plays a key role to strengthening Romania's defense and security. During a visit paid by his Portuguese counterpart, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa in Caracal, the Romanian president said Russia's invasion of Ukraine has once again highlighted NATO's capacity to act firmly, unitarily and coherently to support the Ukrainian people and to strengthen and reinforce allies on the eastern flank. Talks between the two heads of state focused on security developments in Ukraine and providing humanitarian assistance to this country ahead of the cold season, as well as on facilitating grain exports. At bilateral level, the two officials tackled the possibility of boosting Romanian-Portuguese cooperation in the fields of defense, economy, trade, digitization, renewable energy, healthcare and education.
STRATEGY - The Government of Romania has adopted the 2022-2027 National Strategy on promoting equal opportunities and combating domestic violence. The document stipulates measures and actions in such fields as healthcare, education and the labor market, by making national policies reflect gender prospects. To prevent and combat domestic violence, the government seeks to create more safe housing and to provide psychological and legal counseling to the victims. Other measures target marginalized groups such as Roma women, women in rural areas and women with disabilities.
REVOLUTION - The city of Timișoara in western Romania on Tuesday marked a solemn moment celebrating the day when Timișoara became the first city in Romania free of communism. In line with recent tradition, a group of former participants in the revolution stepped on the balcony of the Opera building to reenact the events of 1989, when on December 20, tens of thousands of people took to the streets of Timișoara to protest against Nicolae Ceaușescu's dictatorship. The anti-communist revolution quickly spread to Bucharest and other cities. 1,000 people were killed and another 3,000 were wounded in clashes with security forces. Romania is the only country in Eastern Europe where the transition from communism resulted in bloodshed.
EUROSTAT - The EU's natural gas consumption dropped by 20.1% over August-November 2022 compared to average for the 2017-2021 period, the Eurostat reports. The EU plans to cut by 15% its natural gas consumption over August 2022 - March 2023, compared to the average of the last five years, in order to curb the bloc's dependency on fossil fuels from Russia. According to Eurostat, over August-November 2022, natural gas consumption went down in most EU member states. The sharpest decline, 40%, was reported in Finland, Latvia and Lithuania. Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Romania and Estonia reported a 30% decrease. Despite curbing their consumption, six EU members have failed to meet the target, while consumption actually went up in Malta and Slovakia.
TOURISM - The village of Rășinari in central Romania was shortlisted by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) among the best tourism villages of 2022. Rășinari was included on a list of 32 villages in 18 countries across the world that are embracing tourism as a driver of development and new opportunities for jobs and income. The mayor of Rășinari said the village is located at the foot of the mountain. "The air here is clean, the village is surrounded by fir tree forests, and there are many guesthouses and guided tours. There are plenty of things to do and see", the official added. The Best Tourism Villages award ceremony will take place in February, and comes in recognition of the villages' commitment to innovation and sustainability in all its aspects - economic, social and environmental. (VP)
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