COVID-19 Romania has had 1,629 new SARS-CoV-2 cases in 24 hours, the Strategic Communication Group announced on Friday at noon. The total number of infections thus reaches 119,683. Also on Friday, another 42 COVID-19-related deaths were reported, taking the total death toll up to 4,633. A total of 7,245 patients are currently hospitalised, with 508 of them in intensive care. Of the Romanians living abroad, 6,693 have so far tested positive for the virus, and 126 of them died.
ELECTIONS In Romania, today is the last day of audio-visual campaigning ahead of the local elections due on Sunday. The campaign, which started on August 28 and was rather atypical because of the coronavirus pandemic, ends at 7 AM on Saturday. For the first time ever, the campaign took place in a state of alert and under strict healthcare protection regulations, and so will the ballot itself. A total of 18 million voters are expected in polling stations, to elect, in only one round, mayors, chairs of county and local councils and county and local councillors. Analysts say voter turnout will make an important difference in Sunday’s elections.
SCHOOLS In Romania, face-to-face teaching in the schools where polling stations are organized for Sunday’s local elections will be suspended as of today, with classes only to be taught online until September 30. A number of 146 schools in Bucharest, which will not be hosting polling stations, will carry on in-person teaching, according to a scenario approved by the Bucharest Committee for Emergencies.
RESIGNATION Giorgiana Hosu, chief prosecutor of DIICOT (the Directorate Investigating Organised Crime and Terrorism), Thursday announced she was stepping down. The decision follows a 3-year suspended sentence given to her husband by a court of first instance. Appointed this February, Giorgiana Hosu is the 3rd DIICOT chief to resign in the past 5 years. Dan Hosu, former chief in the Romanian Police’s organised crime division, was sentenced for inciting illegal access to a computer system and inciting the use of information not intended for publication, in view of obtaining undue benefits for himself or others. The ruling is not final.
MILITARY Over 200 troops from Romania, Albania, Bulgaria, Greece, North Macedonia and Turkey, with air and land equipment, are taking part in the 2020 Carpathian Eagle multinational exercise of Special Operations Forces, hosted by the Cincu base in Romania. According to the Defence Ministry, the exercise is designed to train military structures in planning, organising, implementing and managing independent special operations, with a view to enhancing regional security.
BSEC The Romanian foreign minister Bogdan Aurescu will char today an informal, online meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC), held on the sidelines of the 75th top-level UN General Assembly meeting. Romania is the acting president of the BSEC until the end of this year. The special guest of the meeting is the European Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Oliver Varhelyi.
FOOTBALL Romania’s football champions, CFR Cluj, qualified into the Europa League playoffs, after defeating Thursday night the Swedish team Djurgaarden IF, 1-0 away from home. In the playoff due on October 1, the Romanians will play on home turf against the Finnish side KuPS Kuopi. On the other hand, Romania’s Cup winner FCSB (Bucharest), Thursday night lost at home to the Czech team Slovan Liberec, 0-2, and failed to qualify in the Europa League playoffs. FCSB played with a team of substitutes, because of the large number of coronavirus infection cases reported among its regular players. (translated by: Ana-Maria Popescu)