A roundup of domestic and international news.
MILITARY - A military ceremony was held on Wednesday at the Arch of Triumph in the capital city Bucharest, marking the completion of the Romanian Army’s mission in Afghanistan. President Klaus Iohannis decorated the battle flags of the Romanian units that took part in the NATO mission Resolute Support in Afghanistan. A moment of silence was observed and the names of the 27 Romanian troops who died in that theatre of operations were recited. The head of state emphasized that the Romanian Armed Forces’ mission in Afghanistan will be remembered as the longest, most complex and most important military operation outside national borders since WW2. According to Iohannis, for 19 years over 32,000 troops took part in this mission.
GOVERNMENT - The Romanian Government approved the disbursement of around 150 million lei for 17 counties affected by floods. The money will be used to repair over one thousand objectives. Also on Wednesday, PM Florin Citu announced that three burn centers will be opened, under a programme developed jointly with the World Bank, in the cities of Bucharest, Timisoara and Targu Mures. The Government passed, by emergency order, the intervention guidelines in the case of brown bears, with a strategy for the long-term management of the brown bear population being drafted. Funds for the Sibiu Theatre Festival and Astra Film Festival were also earmarked on Wednesday.
CORRUPTION – Romanian businessman Nelu Iordache was taken at the National Anti-Corruption Directorate to be heard in a new corruption case. In March he was sentenced by the Bucharest Tribunal to 12 and a half years in prison for fiscal evasion and embezzlement. Also, in January 2020, Nelu Iordache had been acquitted in another corruption case.
CORONAVIRUS - The number of coronavirus infections in Romania is relatively low, but authorities expect a slight increase in the upcoming period. 102 new infection cases and 2 related casualties were reported on Wednesday out of over 27,000 tests performed. 38 patients are in intensive care. As regards the anti-Covid vaccination, more than 15,000 people got immunized in the past 24 hours. 4.7 million Romanians have been fully vaccinated so far. Romania will continue, both independently and at EU level, to donate or re-sell some vaccine doses. This week a new donation to the Republic of Moldova is scheduled, after batches sent previously to Serbia, Ukraine, Argentina and Vietnam.
DEFICIT - Romania’s agri-food trade deficit went up nearly 66% in the first quarter of this year compared to the corresponding period of 2020. According to the Romanian Agriculture Ministry, in January – March 2021 Romania exported agricultural and food products worth 1.74 billion euro and spent almost 2.5 billion euro on importing such products.
FOOTBALL - Romania’s football champions CFR Cluj Tuesday defeated 2-1 away from home the Lincoln Red Imps of Gibraltar, in the second preliminary round of the Champions League. On Thursday CS Universitatea Craiova will take on the Albanian side KF Laci, while Sepsi OSK Sfântu Gheorghe will play against Spartak Trnava of Slovakia, in the second preliminary round of the newly created Europa Conference League. Also playing in the second preliminary round are Romania’s vice-champions FCSB, who will take on Shahtior Karaganda of Kazakhstan. The first leg is scheduled for 22 July, and the second leg a week later. (EE)