President Trump hopes to meet President Iohannis soon, US Embassy shares concerns of the German Embassy over Valcov's social network posts
Trump – Iohannis – The American President Donald Trump expressed regret for having cancelled the meeting with his Romanian counterpart Klaus Iohannis at the June NATO summit hosted by Brussels. Mr. Trump had to cancel all of his bilateral meetings at the June summit due to the prolonged heated debates about the money each member state is allotting to defense. In a letter quoted by news agencies, the White House leader also writes that he hopes to meet the Romanian president again some time soon. This month, the two officials are set to participate in New York in a UN meeting.
Reaction – The US Embassy in Bucharest announced it shared the concerns of the German diplomatic mission in Romania related to the social network posts of one of the advisors to the PM Viorica Dancila, Darius Valcov, who suggested that the anti-government movement ‘#rezist’ and the Democratic Forum of Germans in Romania are Nazi organizations. ‘We firmly condemn any form of discrimination, defamation and hatred towards the German minority and any other minority in Romania. Such accusations that we have seen lately are ungrounded and unjustifiable’ wrote the representatives of the German Embassy in a post also shared by the American Embassy. Considered an adversary of the leftist government of Romania, president Klaus Iohannis headed the Democratic Forum of Germans in Romania between 2002 and 2013. A former mayor of Slatina, in the south of Romania, and a former Social Democratic senator and minister Valcov was sentenced in February to 8 years in prison in a corruption case. The decision is not definitive and can be appealed.
Brussels – Romania alongside Bulgaria, Cyprus, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain and Hungary has reported progress in relation to the number of projects selected for EU funding- says the EU Commissioner for Regional Policy, Corina Cretu. According to a communiqué of the EC’s Open Data Portal, the total volume of investments allotted to development projects in the EU countries stands, in the first half of 2018, at more than 300 billion Euros, higher by 42 billion. The EU Commissioner also added that the amount of money allotted for specific projects out of the total cohesion budget for Romania for the period 2014-2020 stands, at present, at 62% as compared to 54% at the end of 2017.
Football – On Friday evening Romania’s national football team drew 0-0 (nil all) with Montenegro, on home ground, in the southern city of Ploiesti, in its debut match in the newly created UEFA Nations League. Given a sanction imposed by UEFA, the match took place behind closed doors, which is a first for a matched played on home ground by the Romanians. In the same Group 4 of UEFA Nations League C, Lithuania was defeated by Serbia 0-1. On Monday, Romania will be up against Serbia, and in October, also in an away match, the Romanian footballers will play against Lithuania. The results obtained in the Nations League count for the preliminaries of the 2020 European Championship. Also on Friday, Romania’s Under 21 team defeated Portugal 2-1 in an away match in Group 8 of the European Championship preliminaries. After 7 matches, Romania is ranked 2nd in the classification with 15 points. Leading the rankings is Bosnia with 18 points from 8 matches. The first ranking team after the preliminaries will qualify directly to the final tournament and the best 4 out of the 9 2nd-ranked teams will go to the playoffs, to select two teams that will go to the European Championship.
Sweden – Saturday is the last day of the election campaign in Sweden ahead of Sunday’s parliamentary elections. According to opinion surveys, the main centre-left and center right parties are very close to one another in citizens’ voting preferences, and it is very likely that none of them will obtain the majority in the future parliament. The anti-immigration far right will get around 20% of the votes and might become the second stronger party in the Swedish parliament. (news translated by Lacramioara Simion)