UPDATE: Romanian tennis player Simona Halep qualifies to the finals of the Roland Garros tennis tournament, the second Grand Slam of the year
UPDATE: Romanian tennis player Simona Halep, number 4 in the WTA
rankings, has qualified to the finals of the Roland Garros tournament, the
second Grand Slam of the year.
In a dramatic match on Thursday evening, she defeated
Czech Karolina Pliskova, in the
semi-finals, 6-4, 3-6,6-3.
On Wednesday, in the quarters, Simona defeated the
Ukrainian Elina Svitolina, after a spectacular come-back, 3-6, 7-6, 6-0.
wins the final, besides getting her first Grand Slam title, Simona Halep will
also step up to the first position in the world rankings.
Simona will play for the Roland Garros trophy with Jelena Ostapenko, from Latvia. Halep also played the
final in Roland Garros in 2014, but she lost to the Russian Maria Sharapova.
US VISIT – Romanian President, Klaus Iohannis, will meet his counterpart, Donald Trump, in Washington on Friday. President Iohannis has said the meeting will have a major positive impact both on the people in Romania and on the Romanian community living in the US. According to the Presidential Administration, deepening the bilateral Strategic Partnership will be high on the agenda of the meeting, the more so as in 2017 the two countries celebrate 20 years since it was launched. The Romanian head of state will also reiterate Bucharest’s firm commitment to further be a predictable and trustworthy ally of Washington. Also on Friday, the Romanian President is due to meet Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson. The agenda of the visit has also included, among others, talks with the President pro tempore of the United States Senate, Orrin Hatch, and with representatives of the Romanian community in the US.
PARIS VISIT - The Romanian Prime Minister Sorin Grindeanu on Thursday met with his French counterpart Edouard Philippe. According to Radio Romania’s correspondent, the agenda of talks included bilateral cooperation, an analysis of the political situation in the EU after Brexit and Bucharest's relations with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). That was Edouard Philippe's first meeting with a counterpart since his appointment last month. Traditionally a Francophone and Francophile country, Romania has with France a strategic partnership agreement concluded in 2008. On Wednesday, PM Grindeanu attended in Paris the ceremony marking Romania's joining the Nuclear Energy Agency of the OECD.
EPPO- Romania is among the 20 EU member states which agreed in Luxembourg on Thursday with the establishment of a European Public Prosecutor's Office, EPPO, which is to investigate cross-border criminal cases which affect the budget and the financial interests of the EU. Under the agreement, the EPPO’s jurisdiction will include the 20 EU member states which have agreed with the establishment of the institution, whose headquarters will be based in Luxembourg. The decision was made during a meeting of the EU’s Justice and Home Affairs Council.
ANTI-CORRUPTION – The chief prosecutor of the Romanian Anti-Corruption Directorate, Laura Codruta Kovesi, on Thursday announced, in a notification sent to the Parliamentary Commission investigating the 2009 presidential elections that she will not attend the commission’s hearings next week. She motivated her decision by saying that the Higher Council of the Magistracy decided in a plenary session that prosecutors can’t be cited and compelled to appear, as witnesses, before parliamentary commissions, because, under constitutional norms, they are part of the judicial authority. Among those invited to hearings next week are former PM Emil Boc and the former director of the Romanian Intelligence Service, George Maior. The establishment of the commission was decided following disclosures made by a journalist, according to whom the electoral process unfolding in December 2009 was reportedly influenced by high ranking officials of the Romanian state, including heads of law enforcement institutions. The presidential elections were won by the right wing candidate, Traian Basescu, who outperformed the Social-Democratic candidate, Mircea Geoana.
PRAGUE VISIT - The Romanian Minister Delegate for European Affairs Ana Birchall is paying a working visit to Prague on Friday. She will meet with Czech officials with European affairs responsibilities. The agenda of talks includes current issues, with focus on the future of the EU, Brexit developments, Romania's preparation for taking over the presidency of the EU Council, as well as topics such as migration and internal security. Also, the Romanian official will attend the conference on EU security and defence, DESCOP 2017. Also participating in the conference will be, among others, the European Commission President, Jean Claude Juncker, the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, and the NATO Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller.
GROWTH - Romania has had the highest economic growth rate of the 28 EU member states, with a GDP growth of 5.5% in the first quarter of 2017, as compared to the same period in 2016, reads the third estimate published today by the Statistical Office of the EU, Eurostat. The highest growth rates in January - March 2017 were registered by Romania, Slovenia, Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Hungary and Bulgaria. No drops in the GDP were reported in the EU in the first three months of the year.
THEATRE - Some 500 performances and events will be hosted by the International Theatre Festival in Sibiu, the largest such festival in Romania and one of the most important in Europe. The Director of the Festival Constantin Chiriac has announced that all tickets have already been sold. As a first this year, the festival will have a section of organ concerts held in several Saxon fortified churches and also a special programme, with five performances in English, staged at the Ground Forces Academy in Sibiu, in particular for the foreign and Romanian soldiers participating in the NATO exercises underway at the Cincu shooting ground.