Parliament to begin hearings on the presidential election of 2009 won by Traian Basescu
HEARINGS – A parliamentary committee that probes into the presidential election of 2009 is to start hearings on Monday, and the first to be heard is the journalist and former political adviser Dan Andronic. He has recently stated that the heads of major public institutions at that time, including the Romanian Intelligence Service and the Prosecutor General’s Office, influenced the outcome of the vote to the benefit of Traian Basescu. The latter won a second presidential term in office in 2009, after a very narrow victory against the Social Democrat Mircea Geoana. Prosecutors have initiated criminal proceedings in this case, for suspected abuse of office and forgery of documents and election records.
EU – The Romanian Minister Delegate for European Affairs, Ana Birchall, takes part in Brussels on Monday in a meeting of the General Affairs Council held in an EU27 format, the Romanian Foreign Ministry announced. The participants will adopt a decision authorising the opening of the Brexit negotiations with the UK and nominating the Commission as the EU negotiator, and will endorse negotiating directives. On the sidelines of the meeting, Minister Ana Birchall will have talks with her Estonian counterpart, Matti Maasikas, about the priorities of the Estonian presidency of the EU Council and the main topics of discussion at EU level. The Romanian Minister Delegate for European Affairs mentioned that Bucharest attaches great importance to protecting the rights and interests of the Romanians living in UK.
FRANCE – The President of France, Emmanuel Macron, receives the PM of Italy Paolo Gentiloni in Paris today. According to AFP, the meeting takes place days ahead the G7 summit that brings together the leaders of the USA, Japan, Germany, France, UK, Italy and Canada in Sicily, southern Italy. A major topic on the agenda will be the Paris Agreement on climate change, at a time when the US President Donald Trump, who will attend the meeting in Sicily, threatens to take his country out of this process, AFP also notes.
INTERNATIONAL – While on his first international tour, the US President Donald Trump is to address in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, today leaders of over 40 Muslim countries. BBC reports that the US President will mention the need to open a common front against religious extremism and against intolerant ideologies. On Saturday, the first day of the tour, the parties signed contracts amounting to 380 billion US dollars, primarily in the oil sector and in arms procurement.
TENNIS – The Romanian tennis player Simona Halep, number 4 in the world, plays today the final of the tournament in Rome, which has 2.7 million US dollars in total prize money, against the Ukrainian Elina Svitolina (no. 11 WTA). In the semi-final, Halep outplayed the Dutch Kiki Bertens (20 WTA). Last week, the Romanian player won the Madrid tournament for the second consecutive year. This is the 24th tournament final for Halep, who has won 15 titles so far. If she wins today, Halep goes up to no. 3 in the world rankings.
FOOTBALL – Dinamo Bucharest won the Romanian League’s Cup after Saturday night’s 2-0 victory against ACS Poli Timisoara. The match was played in Bucharest. This is the second competition organised by the Romanian Professional Football League, after the championship. This year the League awarded the champions title to FC Viitorul. FCSB, formerly known as Steaua Bucharest, threatened however that it would challenge the decision at the Court of Arbitration for Sport in the Switzerland, on grounds that both teams finished the championship with the same score and that overall it won in the direct matches against Viitorul. Two other teams from southern Romania, FC Voluntari and Astra Giurgiu, will play for the Romanian Football Cup.
(translated by: Ana-Maria Popescu)