12 January 2021

Morning headlines- January 12th 2021

Florin Jipa

Image source: Mediafax

Coronavirus and vaccines

  •  a WHO team comprised of international experts responsible with investigating the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic will go to China on January 14th. The team should have entered China at the beginning of January, but Beijing has blocked its entrance, saying that their visas were not approved. It is not clear if the team will be allowed to enter the Chinese city Wuhan, where the coronavirus was first detected, at the end of 2019, says Mediafax.
  •  Almost 7 million Americans were vaccinated, the US being the leading state in the immunization race, followed by China, Israel and Great Britain, says Mediafax.
  • Romania is getting ready for the launch of the second phase of the vaccination, on January 15th. There are some tensions between the mayors and the Government due to the necessary funds, says Mediafax.

Global political and military events

  • The US House of Representatives has started the impeachment procedure of president Trump, says CNN. The vote will be held on Wednesday.
  • FBI warns that Trump’s supporters are preparing new armed protests in all 50 state capitals.
  • Sanctions. The US Treasury Department has announced, on Monday, it will sanction 11 entities and people from Ukraine and Russia, to destroy the alleged Russian influence network associated with Andrii Derkach, an Ukrainian politician who is tied to Rudolph Giuliani, the lawyer of president Donald Trump, says The Hill.
  • The US Army is investigating the participation of other military at the Capitol Hill manifestations, after a physiological operations officer was identified after leading a group of protesters, says AFP.
  • Pakistan has completed the fence at the border with Afghanistan, says AFP.
  • Portugal. President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa was tested positive for the new coronavirus and cancelled almost his entire agenda two weeks before the presidential elections, to be held on January 24th, says AFP, after an announcement made Monday night, by the Portuguese presidency.
  • Russia/the US. The Russian deputy Minister of Defence, General Valery Gherasimov has talked, on Monday, on the phone, with the president of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from the US Army, General Mark Milley, about security in some regions, says Tass.
  •   Cuba was introduced by the US on the list with states supporting terrorism, also being sanctioned, says CNN.
  • Turkey. The chief of the Defence Industry from Turkey, Ismail Demir, has stated on Monday that the Russian S-400 systems are ready to be used, leaving the Army to decide when that will happen. Demir also stated that Turkey still wants to procure the F-35 aircrafts from the US.

Romania’s defence and security

  • Protests. The Sanitas Federation will start, on Tuesday, a series of actions to support the workers from the social assistance and health field, following the emergency ordinance no. 226/2020, which foresees the wage and pensions freeze for this year, says Agerpress.
  • Car taxes. The Minister of Environment, Tanczos Barna, has stated on Monday that he will consult with the producers and car dealers on the possibility to reintroduce a car tax on pollution.