COVID-19 Romanian authorities announced on Wednesday 104 new SARS-CoV-2 cases for the past 24 hours, out of over 30,000 tests. Close to 1,000 people are hospitalised, with 192 patients currently in intensive care. Another 71 COVID-related deaths have also been reported, but only 18 of them occurred in the past 24 hours. Given the declining trend in the pandemic, the authorities are considering a return to normal activity in a growing number of hospitals. Meanwhile, the vaccine roll-out continues, although the pace is considerably slower than in previous months. Over the past 24 hours around 32,000 doses have been given, accounting for around one-third of the figures in peak periods. As many as 4.6 million Romanians have received the COVID-19 vaccine, and over 4.2 million of them have received both doses.
VISIT The president of Romania Klaus Iohannis
Wednesday began a 2-day official visit to Estonia. He had a meeting in Tallin
with his counterpart Kersti Kaljulaid, and will also have talks with PM Kaja
Kallas and with the Estonian Parliament speaker Jüri Ratas. After the talks,
the Romanian official announced having invited Estonia to take part in the
Euro-Atlantic Centre for Resilience in Bucharest. "Romania and Estonia share
views and interests at EU level, which facilitates the close cooperation
between our countries in relation to the current agenda and future priorities
of the EU," Iohannis said. He also added that the talks tackled means to
strengthen bilateral cooperation in the digital sector, in cyber security and
AI, given Estonia's experience in the field and the fact that Romania is
hosting the EU's new cyber centre. Kersti
Kaljulaid said Estonia is very open to working with Romania in the digital
OMBUDSMAN Romanian MPs have endorsed the dismissal of Renate Weber as Ombudsman. She was appointed to office 2 years ago, when the Social Democrats were in power. The current right-of-centre parliamentary majority Tuesday rejected the institution’s annual reports for the past 3 years. Renate Weber has been criticised for exceeding her powers, which resulted in breaches of the Constitution and of the legislation regulating the activity of the institution. The Social Democratic Party in opposition say they are considering taking the matter to the Constitutional Court, because in their view the Ombudsman has not broken the Constitution.
TALKS The US president Joe Biden and his Russian
counterpart Vladimir Putin had talks in Geneva on Wednesday, at a time of tense
relations between the two countries. The meeting took under 4 hours, less than
expected. The US-Russia
relation must be stable and predictable, president Biden said in a separate
press conference after the summit. He added he made it clear that his agenda
was not against Russia, but that the US will continue to raise human rights issues.
According to Biden, the last thing Putin wants now is a cold war. In turn, the
Russian president described the meeting as constructive, with no hostility, and proved the 2 leaders' desire
to understand each other. Putin also said Russia and the US share
a responsibility for nuclear stability and willhold
talks on possible changes to their recently extended New START arms limitation
agencies also report that diplomats recalled earlier this year will return to
MILITARY The Parliament of Romania approved the participation of Romanian troops and military equipment in the Takuba Task Force in Sahel, led by France. Romania will contribute 50 troops beginning the last quarter of this year, and the funds required for the participation will be supplied by the National Defence Ministry. In March 2020, a group of 13 countries announced the set-up of the Takuba Task Force designed to fight terrorist groups in the Liptako region in Africa.
FOOTBALL According to the draw in Switzerland for the second preliminary round of the new football competition Europa Conference League, Romania’s vice-champions FCSB will play against Shahtior Karaganda (Kazakhstan), while Romanian Cup winner Universitatea Craiova will take on the winner of the match pitting Lach (Albania) against FK Podgorica (Montenegro), in the first preliminary round. Another Romanian team, Sepsi OSK Sfântu Gheorghe, will play against the winner of the match between Spartak Trnava (Slovakia) and Mosta (Malta). Romanian champions CFR Cluj, in case they lose to Borac Banja Luka in the Champions’League first preliminary round, will have to play in the second preliminary round of the Europa Conference League against the loser in the match pitting Zalgiris Vilnius (Lithuania) against Linfield Belfast (Northern Ireland). (tr. A.M. Popescu)