N. DJUVARA – Romania cultural, academic and political personalities are mourning the death of historian, diplomat and novelist Neagu Djuvara, who died on Thursday in Bucharest, aged 101. The Romanian Foreign Ministry has said in a release that Neagu Djuvara will continue to be a symbol of the Romanian elite and an example for future generations. In 2016, the year he turned 100, Neagu Djuvara received “Romania’s Star” National Order in rank of Knight, the highest distinction offered by the Romanian state. Neagu Djuvara was born in 1916 in Bucharest in an aristocratic family. After studying at the Sorbonne, where he got a degree in History and another one in Law, he fought in the military campaigns in Bessarabia and Transdniester. He lived for 45 years in exile before coming back to Romania, where he became a well-known figure due to his erudition, wit and style. “I came back to the country to offer, not to receive. Destiny wanted me to do at 70 what I wanted to achieve at 30: to be an academic, to publish books in Romania,” Djuvara said in an interview.
EC – The European Commission monitors closely the situation in Romania, where citizens are protesting against the recent reform of the judiciary and against corruption, European Commissioner for Justice, Vera Jourova said on Friday in Sofia, ahead of an informal meeting of the EU justice ministers. Jurova said the EC wants reforms that should render the justice system more independent, highly functional and trustworthier. The evolutions in Romania are raising doubts over things going in the right direction, Vera Jurova said.
AGRICULTURE – Romania does not support the idea of a ceiling being set for payments under the future Common Agricultural Policy, as this measure is likely to endanger the source of food safety and the large farms, which are essential to Romanian agriculture, Romanian Agriculture Minister Petre Daea said at a meeting with the French Ambassador to Bucharest, Michele Ramis. In his turn, the French official said that Paris is close to the objectives presented by Romania in the agricultural sector, and pointed out that the next Common Agricultural Policy would have to deal with challenges such as food safety and climate change.
GOVERNMENT– The representatives of the ruling coalition in Romania made up of the Social Democratic Party and the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats are today announcing the final government membership. The structure of the government remains unchanged, with 28 members of whom 3 deputy prime ministers, one of them without portfolio. Some of the Social Democrat ministers will carry on their terms in office during the future government. On Monday senators and deputies are going to give their confidence vote for the final membership of the Dăncilă cabinet and for the governing program. The Liberal opposition is holding talks with the other political parties to block the investiture of the new cabinet, the third one of the ruling coalition.
ECHU - At the annual press conference of the European Court of Human Rights on January 25, 2018 in Strasbourg, President Guido Raimondi took stock of the year 2017. Lat year saw unusual fluctuation in the case-load as a result of a high volume of incoming cases in the first part of the year and a large number of cases disposed of over the last six months. Romania is the country with the biggest number of applications, having exceeded Russia, Turkey and Ukraine. Most of the 9,900 cases, are against the conditions of detention in Romania. In 2017, the European Court of Human Rights ruled against the Romanian state in 20 such cases. Also last year Romania was warned that it risks being fined unless it improves conditions in penitentiaries.
TENNIS - World’s no. 1 tennis player Simona Halep who on Thursday qualified for the finals of the Australian Open, the year’s first Grand Slam tournament, after defeating the German Angelique Kerber in a dramatic match that lasted 140 minutes, will be up against the world’s number two Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark, in the competition’s final. The Romanian staved off three-consecutive match points from 0-40 down deep in the third set of her record-setting third-round epic against Lauren Davis, before fighting off two more match points in Thursday's engrossing semi-final win over Angelique Kerber. Halep has so far won 16 trophies and has been world No.1 for 16 weeks and will now try to win a grand slam crown. (Translated by Elena Enache)