Timişoara - The city of Timişoara, in western Romania, officially becomes, as of today, for one year, a European Capital of Culture. Approximately 16,000 people are expected to participate in the 130 events taking place this weekend, on the occasion of the official opening of the program. The entire city will be animated by concerts, exhibitions, street performances, theater plays, film screenings and workshops, all under the slogan “Shine your light – Light up your city!” More than 100 Romanian and foreign officials, including about 40 ambassadors, the Prime Minister Nicolae Ciucă and the European Commissioner Adina Vălean have confirmed their participation in the opening gala at the Palace of Culture in Timișoara. Moreover, Adina Vălean will hand the local authorities the "Melina Mercouri" award, worth 1.5 million Euros, which is awarded to cities that have fulfilled their commitments in the "European Capitals of Culture" program.
Chişinău - The new government of the Republic of Moldova (with a majority Romanian-speaking population) was inaugurated and sworn in before the pro-Western president Maia Sandu. Prime Minister Dorin Recean warned that in the coming period the intensity of hybrid attacks by the Russian Federation was likely to increase and that, in the event of an aggression, the neutrality status of the Republic of Moldova did not provide any guarantees. Radio Romania’s correspondents in Chişinău note that the government led by Recean will have to face not only a security situation complicated by the war in neighboring Ukraine, but also the economic and energy crises. The Romanian Prime Minister, Nicolae Ciucă, congratulated Recean for the vote obtained and for assuming the responsibility of leading the Government of the Republic of Moldova, and gave assurances regarding the continuation of the dialogue and the identification of support solutions for the European path.
Rome - The Speaker of Romania’s Chamber of Deputies, Marcel Ciolacu, continues his visit to Italy today. He is to meet with the Interior Minister, Matteo Piantedosi, and then he will meet with representatives of the diocesan communities in the Lazio Region. On Thursday, the Romanian official talked with the mayor of Rome, Roberto Gualtieri, about the organization of a bilateral economic forum in Rome. Marcel Ciolacu has said that Italy is Romania's second important commercial partner, and Rome is ‘home to over 200,000 Romanian citizens’. Also on Thursday, the president of the Chamber of Deputies met in Rome with his Italian counterpart, Lorenzo Fontana.
Conference - The Romanian Defense Minister, Angel Tîlvăr, and the Foreign Minister, Bogdan Aurescu, are participating, from Friday until Sunday, in the Munich Security Conference (MSC), a representative forum for discussions on the current dynamics of international security. Bogdan Aurescu participates, as the main speaker, in the round table 'Security in the Black Sea Region: From Cyberstorm and Brinkmanship to Border Confrontation?', organized by the think tanks New Strategy Center (NSC) and Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA). Minister Angel Tîlvăr participates in the conference sessions focused on regional security developments, the implications of Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine, as well as regional stability and security. He will also attend the debates on the conference report (Munich Security Report), a document that highlights the profound changes in the security environment and the consequences of the unprovoked and unjustified war waged by Russia in Ukraine. Among the guests are prominent personalities from NATO, the EU, the UN and other international organizations, as well as important global decision-makers.
Earthquake - A moderate earthquake, with a magnitude of 4.3, occurred on Friday in Gorj county (southwest Romania), at a depth of 15 kilometers, according to the data of the National Institute for Earth Physics. The intensity of the earthquake was revised from 4.4 to 4.3 degrees, following the operator's calculations. On Tuesday, a 5.7 magnitude earthquake occurred in Gorj county, the largest ever produced in that area. The day before, the area was shaken by a 5.2 magnitude earthquake. On March 4, 1977, an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.2, the worst to hit Romania, resulted in the death of 1,570 people, most of them in Bucharest, and caused property damage estimated at over two billion dollars at the time. The earthquake generated an economic and social crisis that, according to historians, the communist dictatorship of the time could not overcome until its collapse in 1989. (LS)