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What the newspapers say: November 17, 2008

de A.C.     HotNews.ro
Luni, 17 noiembrie 2008, 3:44 English | Press Review

All newspapers read on Monday about two consecutive explosions in the Romanian coal mine Petrila. Elsewhere in the news, a European health index places Romania's health system among the last in Europe.

All newspapers read on Monday about the tragedy in one of Romania's coal mines in Petrila on Saturday where 12 people died and 14 were injured, of which six were in a critical condition. Gandul informs that the tragedy became a golden mine for politicians as parliamentary elections are imminent.

President Traian Basescu rushed to the scene of the accident while PM Tariceanu publicly urged Labor, Economy and Interior ministers to treat the situation seriously and investigate the situation further.

However, President Basescu was the first to get there while several Democrat Liberal candidates for the region joined. On Sunday, Basescu visited the injured early in the morning while PM Tariceanu got there late in the afternoon.

Local miners accused serious irregularities, after the tragedy occurred on Saturday and declared that several times, they descended into the mine in extremely dangerous conditions because they were threatened they would lose their jobs otherwise.

Miners' security representative Petru Dragoescu admitted that everybody knew about the dangerous situation of the miners in Petrila but he added that the people were sent down because they had to work and do their jobs. He declared that their job always implies such risks.

After a second explosion took place, four other rescue personnel were killed. Prosecutors started an investigation to determine the exact events that lead to the incident.

Romania libera
reads that mine representatives failed to respond to the crisis in a professional manner: people outside, many of whom were relatives of those caught in the explosions were waiting for an official announcement, with the names of those that were working that day.

Evenimentul Zilei reads that the incident could have been prevented as there were clear signs that the place was not safe. The newspaper quotes doctors in Bucharest treating the severely injured, who said that their condition was very serious and still critical.

Elsewhere in the news, Cotidianul reads about a European health index that places Romania's health system among the last in Europe. Romanian Health minister Eugen Nicolaescu declared for the newspaper that the index was not professional.

Moreover, the minister said that the report criticizes the health system even though it does not have right to do so. He added that he wouldn't accept a report that has its conclusions in Romania, and said that most probably it was a political instrument, ordered from the presidency.

The Euro Health Consumer Index representatives declared that the authors of the report were representatives of a Swedish company and the press release with the main conclusions were translated in Romanian by one of their staff members.

What is more, the report shows that Nicolaescu was informed about the report: the data stresses that several ministries and official agencies were contacted twice. Moreover, preliminary reports were sent with a request to update the data obtained.

However, Nicolaescu denied any contact with the organization and declared that the main conclusions resemble the opinions of a political ally of President Basescu. According to the report, Romania is just before Macedonia at total health spending per capita. The European Index includes all the 27 member states in the EU but also Norway, Switzerland, Croatia and Macedonia.




















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