April 4-8, 2022

april 4-8, 2022 A roundup of the week's top stories

 

Romania supports Ukraine

Ukraine's president, Volodymyr Zelensky, on Monday addressed Romanian Parliament by videoconference, as he did the parliaments of other countries since the start of the Russian invasion. Prior to the keynote addresses, senators and deputies marked a moment of silence in memory of the Ukrainians who lost their lives during Russia's military aggressions. "Ukraine is not the last target of Russian aggression. Defending the liberty of Ukraine means defending the security of Europe", president Zelensky said, thanking Romanians for assisting Ukrainian refugees. "There are grounds for closer relations between our people, allowing for the full protection of our national minorities, the Romanians in Ukraine and the Ukrainians in Romania", the Kyiv leader pointed out. Monday's message in the Romanian Parliament came as the atrocities of Bucha were revealed to the whole world. In this context, Romania declared ten representatives of the Russian Embassy in Romania personae non grata. According to the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the decision comes in response to the horrendous crimes in Bucha and other towns and villages in Ukraine, "for which Russia bears responsibility". NATO Foreign Ministers met in Brussels on Thursday, and agreed to strengthen their support for Ukraine, including by providing this country with new military systems. The NATO Deputy Secretary General, Mircea Geoană, said the war in Ukraine is now entering a new phase, as Russian troops are regrouping in order to launch a new attack to occupy Donbas and southern Ukraine. Romania's Foreign Minister, Bogdan Aurescu, reiterated Bucharest's position with respect to the need to secure more powerful defenses on the eastern flank in order to ensure a higher degree of deterrence, particularly in the Black Sea region. On the other hand, the Deputy High Commissioner for Operations of the UN Agency for Refugees, Raouf Mazou, paid a visit to Siret border checkpoint on Wednesday, where he was given an overview of the activity. The UN official praised the implication of everyone working on the Romanian-Ukrainian border.

 

 

Support for the Republic of Moldova

Germany, France and Romania on Tuesday co-chaired an international conference devoted to creating a support platform addressing the Republic of Moldova. The initiative stipulates a financial package worth some €695 million, as well as political support to the Republic of Moldova in the context of the war in Ukraine. Europe's poorest country, Moldova right now has the highest refugee per capita rate in the region. Romania's Foreign Minister, Bogdan Aurescu, said the government is preparing an additional non-reimbursable financial assistance package for Moldova worth €10 million. According to Minister Aurescu, Moldova should receive financial support in the long run in order to overcome the effects of the energy crisis.

 

 

Protests and social measures in Romania

This week 35 trade federations from the private and public sectors have staged protests in Romania. Unionists call for the implementation of support measures that should offset the economic and social fallout of the war in Ukraine. They have also called for measures to ensure the country's energy and food safety, amidst the soaring prices for electricity, gas and fuel. Ruling coalition leaders have analyzed the final form of the package of economic and social measures designed to protect the population and the economy from the effects of the crises facing Romania. The plan stands at some €3.5 billion, of which the EU will cover some €1.4 billion.

 

 

Interim Minister of Investments and European Projects

President Klaus Iohannis this week signed the decrees taking note of Dan Vîlceanu's resignation from the position of Minister of Investments and European Projects and appointing Marcel-Ioan Boloș, the acting Minister of Research, as interim minister in the position left vacant. Dan Vîlceanu also resigned as Secretary General of PNL, after the party leader, Florin Cîțu, also stepped down following pressure from local branches of the Liberal Party. The election of a new president is scheduled for Sunday, as part of an extraordinary party congress, to be attended by some 1,300 Liberals from across the country. Prime Minister Nicolae Ciucă has submitted his candidacy, saying his goal is to strengthen the party and prepare for the upcoming election.

 

 

Elena Udrea sentenced to six years in prison

Former Minister of Tourism, Elena Udrea, was arrested on Thursday in Bulgaria, close to the Greek border, after Bucharest authorities issued an international arrest warrant in her name. Udrea was supposed to be taken in custody early that day, after the Supreme Court ruled against her appeal, thus sentencing her to six years in prison in the "Bute Gala" investigation, where she was indicted for bribe-taking and abuse of office. Elena Udrea was one of the close associates of former president, Traian Băsescu. In late March, the High Court of Cassation and Justice gave a final ruling in the latter's case, deciding that Băsescu had worked for nearly 10 years as an informer for the Securitate, the secret police agency of the communist regime. (VP)

 

 

 


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Publicat: 2022-04-09 14:00:00
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