11 February 2021

Morning headlines – February 11th 2021

Florin Jipa

Image source: profimedia

Coronavirus and vaccines

  • The state of alert was extended. The state of alert on Romania’s territory was extended for 20 days, starting with February 12th, said prime-minister Florin Citu, after the Government’s meeting. The decision was adopted on Monday by the National Committee for Emergency Situations, and involve the extension of the state of alert on Romania’s territory and of the prevention measures for the spread of the SARS CoV-2 virus that were adopted until now.
  • The new calculation formula for the infection rate will be applied in two weeks, said, on Wednesday, the prime-minister. He stated that the calculation formula for the infection rate for COVID-19, with the inclusion of focal points, is used in all EU members and will be applied, in two weeks, to allow a transition period before.
  • Record for the AstraZeneca vaccination registrations. On Wednesday, starting with 12.30am, the appointment for the AstraZeneca vaccine has started. Until 8pm, 179 people per minute were appointed, shows the data provided by the National Committee for the Activities on COVID-19 Vaccination, according to Digi24.

Global political and military events

  • US-China discussions. The US president, Joe Biden, has discussed for the first time, on Wednesday, with the Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, expressing his concerns about the Hong Kong situation and the future of the Uighur minority, says AFP. According to experts, more than one million Uighur people were detained in political reeducation camps in Xinjiang. Beijing is refusing the term `camp` and says those centers are professional education centers, dedicated to providing a job and keep people away from religious extremism, says Agerpress.
  • Joe Biden has asked the Pentagon to review its policy on China. It was created a work group, composed of 15 people, led by Ely Ratner, special assistant of the Secretary of Defence, Lloyd Austin. The responsibility of the work group is to offer, in four months, recommendations to the US leaders over the strategy, operational concepts, technology, force and intelligence management on China.
  • Donald Trump is investigated in Georgia and New York for incitement to electoral fraud and for financial fraud. The Fulton district prosecutor’s office, Georgia, sent on Wednesday requests to several officials, including the state secretary Brad Raffensperger and governor Brian Kemp to keep the relevant documents in the investigation. Donald Trump is suspected for calling, on January 2nd, the Georgia state secretary, Brad Raffensperger, to ask him to find him votes and change the result of the presidential elections, says Digi24. Trump is targeted by a criminal investigation in New York as well, for alleged financial fraud. Trump might get a one year sentence because in these two states the federal pardon does not apply.
  • 19 year old teenager, shot in Myanmar. A young girl who was shot while protesting against the military coup in Myanmar is now in a critical condition in a hospital from Nay Pyi Taw. The 19-year old woman was seriously injured while the police was trying to control the protesters using water cannons, rubber bullets and also real bullets, says Digi24.
  • China-India agreement to withdraw the troops from the border. The Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has announced, on Wednesday, that the two countries agreed to withdraw their troops from the border area in west of Himalaya Mountains, says AP.
  • Iran is producing metallic uranium, necessary to produce nuclear bombs. The International Atomic Energy Agency from the UN has published a press release where the director of the Agency Rafael Mariano Grossi said to all IAEA members that Iran is about to research on producing enriched metallic uranium from natural uranium. Now, Iran has enriched the metallic uranium to 20% to use it for research. To create a nuclear weapon Iran needs metallic uranium enriched to 90%, said the AIEA experts.

Romania’s security and defence

  • Prime-minister Florin Citu, meeting with EU officials. Prime-minister Florin Citu will go, Thursday and Friday, on a work visit in Bruxelles, where he will meet several high EU officials, among them also the president of the European Council and the European Commission, Charles Michel, respectively Ursula von der Leyen.
  • The Sanitas Federation is protesting. The Sanitas Federation is protesting, on Thursday, on front of Romania’s Government, asking for the restart of the social dialogue on employees’ salaries from the budgetary system, says Agerpress.
  • The Superior Council of the Magistracy is discussing the dissolution of the Section for the investigation of justice fraud. The SCM is discussing, on Thursday, the law on dissolving the Section for the investigation of justice fraud. The SCM notification was only a consultative one.