April 17, 2022

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EASTER Catholic and Protestant Christians celebrate the Resurrection of Christ. At the Vatican, Pope Francis once again called for peace, describing Easter as the gift of hope during the Mass held in a basilica with thousands of believers. Today, the service takes place in San Pietro Square after 2 years of Covid-related restrictions. For Orthodox and Greek-Catholic believers, who celebrate Easter next weekend, today is Palm Sunday, commemorating the moment when Jesus Christ entered Jerusalem. In Romania, a mostly Orthodox country, nearly one and a half million people are celebrating their name day. President Klaus Iohannis wished happy and peaceful holidays to all those who celebrate Easter or Palm Sunday today.


UKRAINE As of midnight Russian vessels are no longer allowed to enter EU ports, Romanian ports included. The ban also covers ships that replaced the Russian flag with the colours of another state after February 24 when the war in Ukraine started, but not those which need assistance or shelter for safety reasons or those which have saved lives at the sea. In an interview to Sunday's issue of the German magazine Bild am Sonntag, the head of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen said the next stage of EU sanctions will target Russia's oil and banking sectors, particularly the country's largest bank, Sberbank. She added that Brussels was working on smart mechanisms to include Russian oil in the new list of sanctions, so as to reduce the financing for Vladimir Putin's invasion army. EU member states are currently paying for Russian gas and oil via Sberbank and Gazprombank, which have so far been exempt from Europe's sanctions, Reuters explains. Meanwhile, Russia carries on attacks on several cities in Ukraine, including the capital Kyiv, in response to the sinking of its Black Sea flagship, the Moskva. According to Radio Romania's correspondent in Ukraine, Russian forces shelled several cities in the south of Ukraine, whereas in Herson Ukrainian troops continue to attack the occupying Russian forces.


REFUGEES The number of Ukrainian nationals who reached Romania on Saturday was 12.4% higher than on the previous days, the Romanian border police announced. Since the start of the crisis, over 730,000 Ukrainian citizens have entered the country, most of them leaving Romania for other destinations.


INVICTUS A group of 20 Romanian military wounded in battle fields are taking part in the one-week long Invictus Games, hosted his year by The Hague in the Netherlands. They will compete in 7 sports, 6 of them individual competitions (hand archery, athletics, rowing, powerlifting, cycling and swimming) and a team sport (sitting volleyball). The Invictus Games promote respect and empathy for the sacrifice and traumas of wounded military, whose involvement in these activities is an opportunity for social reintegration and for regaining self-confidence, the Romanian Defence Ministry says. For Romanian troops, this year's Invictus participation is the third, after the ones in Toronto, in 2017, and Sydney, one year later.


DIPLOMACY The Romanian Foreign Ministry celebrates 25 years since the Joint Statement on the Romania-Italy Strategic Partnership was signed. The genuine friendship between the 2 countries is facilitated by the presence of over 1 million Romanians in Italy, making up the largest foreign community in that country and also the largest Romanian community abroad, reads a news release issued by the institution.


NORTH KOREA North Korea announced the successful test firing of a new type of tactical guided weapon aimed at boosting the country's nuclear capabilities, which may indicate that Pyongyang is ready to resume nuclear testing. North Korea suspended nuclear testing in 2017, and the following year it blew up the tunnels in its underground nuclear test site, but recent satellite imagery indicates digging and construction activities have been resumed.(AMP)


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Publicat: 2022-04-17 14:00:00
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