Monday, February 16th

EU Commissioner Corina Creţu expected to address ACoR General Assembly

Corina Creţu, the Romanian EU Commissioner for Regional Policy, was expected to address the General Assembly of Romania’s Communes Association (ACoR) in Bucharest on Monday. Ms. Creţu’s Monday agenda also includes a report on her first 100 days of mandate as EU regional policy chief. „I believe we succeeded in achieving lots of things in only three months. The Danube region is most efficient and I believe that regional policies should also focus on energy efficiency, new jobs and transport infrastructure”, Ms. Creţu told reporters. „Around 80 percent of EU Member States’ operational programmes are already adopted”, Ms. Creţu added.

Former MP before DNA prosecutors

A former MP of  Romania’s opposition Popular Movement party appeared before prosecutors of the country’s National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) on Monday. Elena Udrea, also a former presidential candidate, should answer allegations concerning her involvement in the so-called Bute Gala file. DNA proscutors renewed their appeal for further investigation and preventive detention of Ms. Udrea, a transport minister between 2010 and 2012, who allegedly received a 10 percent share in the value of contracts signed with Romanian authorities. Elena Udrea is currently under preventive arrest for 30 days with an appeal expected on Tuesday.

Romanian authorities and Muslim groups condemn recent IS killings

Romanian authorities and Muslim groups condemned the killing of 21 Egyptian Copts in Lybia by militants of the Islamic State terror organisation and called on the international community for a clear response against such actions. The Cultural Islamic League in Romania and „Islam Today” Cultural Centre firmly condemned the atrocities in Lybia while pointing out that their religion rejected any violence. Romania’s Foreign Ministry issued a statement condemning the killings while the country’s President Klaus Iohannis said on his Fecebook page that the killing on innocent people were acts of unspeakable barbarian cruelty. A five-minute video released on Sunday showed Coptic Christians with terrorists forcing them to kneel and then behead them. The images of the killings first emerged in the IS magazine „Dabiq” on Thursday.

„The Forest Is Like the Mountains, See?”, a documentary on Romanian Roma

A documentary film on Romanian Roma communities had its premiere at the 25th edition of the Beeld voor Beeld International Festival in the Dutch city of Amsterdam which ended on Sunday. „The Forest Is Like the Mountains, See?” is a documentary filmed by Germany’s Christiane Schmidt and Belgium’s Didier Guillain in the remote village of Vâlcele near the Transylvanian town of Sfântu Gheorghe, in central Romania. Actually, the film had its international premiere in February 2014 at the International Film Festival in Berlin, Germany, with good reviews where critics pointed out that, „fortunately, Schmidt and Guillain maintain a light touch, building up their observational character with humane, humorous eye. Their tone is compasionate without being condescending, sympathetic rather than sentimental”.

Alexandru Danga