Friday, June 12th

Romanian government facing no-confidence vote

Romania’s government is facing a no-confidence vote on Friday, its first after Klaus Iohannis won the presidential elections last November. The vote was called by the opposition National Liberal Party (PNL) as the party is blaming the government of Prime Minister Victor Ponta for the long queues and bureaucratic hurdles preventing the Romanian diaspora from voting in the first round. PNL also says Mr. Ponta ignored a Constitutional Court ruling concerning the corruption case of Senator Dan Şova, a former minister and associate of Mr. Ponta, while the government includes a number of ministers under investigation for their alleged involvement in corruption-related cases. While Victor Ponta’s government will probably survive a confidence vote on Friday in the capital Bucharest, the premier faces conflict with the president and the judiciary.

PNL protests across Romania

The opposition National Liberal Party (PNL) has announced protests in towns and cities across Romania after its rally in front of the Parliament building in the capital Bucharest was suspended on Friday. Hundreds of people are expected to take to the streets and call on the government to resign, according to a PNL statement. Similar rallies were already reported in the Romanian northern town of Cluj-Napoca and the capital Bucharest on Thursday. Protesters called on Prime Minister Victor Ponta to follow the example of Transport Minister Ioan Rus who resigned after slur on wives of expatriates. A scheduled rally of the governing Social Democratic Party (PSD) has also been dropped.

Doctor Honoris Causa awarded to ECHR President Dean Spielmann

The University in the Romanian capital Bucharest is expected to award the Doctor Honoris Causa degree to Dean Spielmann, President of the European Court of Human Rights, for his contribution to the culture of enforcing human rights in Europe, according to a university communiqué issued on Friday. President of the Fifth Section of the Court since 2011, Mr. Spielmann was elected Vice-President and then, shortly afterwards, President of the ECHR in 2012. He is also a member of the Grand Ducal Institute of Luxembourg and has held academic posts at the universities of Luxembourg, Nancy and Louvain.

The International Theatre Festival Sibfest opening in Sibiu

The International Theatre Festival Sibfest is opening in the Romanian Transylvanian town of Sibiu on Friday. The event is widely seen as the most important annual festival of performing arts in Romania. The ten-day festival is attended by famous groups in the performing arts, Romanian and foreign filmmakers, critics, local and foreign cultural tourism operators. Tens of thousands of people around Romania and the world meet in Sibiu to celebrate a cultural event aimed at promoting globally recognised standards of performances and artistic creativity. This year edition exceeds in importance similar events such the festivals in Edinburgh and Avignon, festival president Constantin Chiriac told Radio Romania.

Alexandru Danga