COVID-19 The number of COVID-19 cases in Romania passes 26.300, with the death toll standing at 1,612. Of those who tested positive for the virus, 18,814 recovered. PM Ludovic Orban requested enhanced mobilisation of the authorities and more inspections. Meanwhile, Romanian researchers say the patients who have recovered from the COVID-19 are unlikely to get infected again. They reached this conclusion after having analysed the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the country, which they traced back to Wuhan, China. Most likely, the virus reached all parts of the country through community spread.
PANDEMIC Today the total number of coronavirus infections worldwide has gone over 10 million, a major benchmark for the pandemic which has so far killed nearly half a million people. According to the World Health Organisation, the number of COVID-19 cases is almost double the number of severe flu cases reported every year. The US, which is the worst hit country, reports more than 2.5 million cases, and states with record-high figures like Florida and Texas reintroduced containment measures, after the authorities had eased restrictions over the past few weeks. In turn, Europeans disagree over the list of countries whose citizens will be allowed to enter the EU as of July 1. According to France Presse sources, talks will continue tomorrow, and the green lighted countries may include Canada, Australia, Japan, South Korea and Serbia, but not the US. The European Union closed all external borders in mid-March, and now the countries that rely heavily on tourism, such as Greece, want the borders reopened as soon as possible. Restrictions will be lifted gradually however, with bimonthly assessments, and countries with decreasing infection figures will be privileged.
COMMEMORATION Romania, the Republic of Moldova and the Romanian diaspora are commemorating today 80 years since the eastern Romanian territories were annexed by the Soviet Union. On June 28, 1940, following an ultimatum, Soviet troops occupied Bessarabia and northern Bucovina, Romanian regions totalling around 55,000 sq km, with a majority ethnic Romanian population. Hundreds of thousands of families sought asylum in Romania, and tens of thousands were deported to Siberia and Kazakhstan. The territories annexed by Moscow are currently part of the former Soviet republics of Moldova and Ukraine.
FINLAND The Romanian Foreign Ministry marks today the celebration of 100 years of diplomatic relations with Finland, and voices Romania’s desire to further consolidate the cooperation between the 2 states, at bilateral, European and global level. According to the Foreign Ministry, Romania recognised Finland’s independence on April 8, 1920. At economic level, bilateral trade has been on an upward trend since 2013, from 267 million euros to 402 million euros in 2019, when a 3.46% increase was reported since the previous year. Finland is the 30th biggest foreign investor in Romania, with over 200 companies incorporated in Romania with Finnish capital and investments of over 70 million euros. The cooperation between Romania and Finland has been strengthened over the past few years, and at EU level the 2 countries were part of the same trio at the EU Council presidendy, alongside Croatia, between January 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020.
POLAND Poland is electing its president today, in a ballot postponed over the coronavirus pandemic. The incumbent president Andrzej Duda, supported by the right-wing power, is challenged by the mayor of Warsaw, Rafal Trzaskowski, representing the Civic Platform. Polls indicate that none of the candidates is likely to go over the 50% threshold required to win the election in the first round.
(translated by: Ana-Maria Popescu)