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Romanian deputies reject anti-graft body's request to pursue criminal inquiry against fellow MP in sensitive corruption case Members of Romania's House of Deputies rejected on Tuesday a request by the National Anticorruption Department to approve a criminal inquiry against former minister Rovana Plumb, a deputy for the governing Social Democrats (PSD), in a major corruption case. Defending herself in Parliament, Plumb suggested the case was part of a campaign to "demonize" the PSD, while a fellow PSD deputy, Judicial Commission head Eugen Nicolicea, put up a report claiming that the law was not broken in any way.
Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe asks Romanian authorities to "review criminal legislation as soon as possible" and "to support politically and financially the outstanding work of the National Anticorruption Directorate" The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (APCE) has adopted Resolution 2188/2017- "New threats to the rule of law in member countries of the Council of Europe", according to Justiecurata.ro. Drafted by German Christian Democrat Bernd Fabritius as speaker, the resolution criticizes the situation in Romania, the Republic of Moldova, Bulgaria, Poland and Turkey. The resolution was adopted at the meeting of 11 October with 47 votes in favor, 7 against and 2 abstentions.
Who are the new ministers named in Romania government reshuffle Romania's governing Social Democrats (PSD) have decided on their proposals for three new ministers, in a government reshuffle sparked by a tensions between PSD leader Liviu Dragnea and PM Mihai Tudose. The new ministers are Paul Stanescu for Development Ministry, Felix Stroe for Transport Ministry and Marius Nica for European Funds Ministry.
​Romania governmnent expects reshuffle as govt party leadership "passed difficult moment" in power struggle between leader Dragnea, PM Tudose Romania's governing Social Democrats are expected to make decisions on Friday on a a significant government reshuffle after the party accepted the resignation of several controversial ministers during marathon talks on Thursday night. The talks are seen as a blow for de facto party leader Liviu Dragnea, who is battling for power with prime minister Mihai Tudose.
Who is, Mihai Busuioc, new head of institution that controls how public money is spent: A close friend of Liviu Dragnea, with hundreds of thousands of euros in his bank accounts Mihai Busuioc, now secretary general of the Government, was appointed by Parliament on Wednesday as president of the Court of Accounts, the institution that controls how public money is spent in Romania. He replaces Nicolae Vacaroiu, whose 9-year term expires this month.
Romania's National Audiovisual Council rejects license request for Iasi-based TV station RTR amid suspicions of links to Russian state propaganda The National Audiovisual Council rejected on Tuesday a request from Iasi-based companyTelecontent Production companin Iasi for the RTR TV channel, after postponing a decision in this matter in August, as representatives of the audiovisual forum said for HotNews.ro
Bucharest Mechanical Plant and US General Dynamics Company signs a Memorandum of understanding for the production and delivery of armored vehicles The Romanian Ministry of Economy and Romarm, through Bucharest Mechanical Plant, and the American company General Dynamics signed a memorandum of understanding and  a cooperation agreement on Tuesday, in the presence of Prime Minister Mihai Tudose. The Memorandum of Understanding sets out the preliminary guidelines for cooperation as well as future actions aimed at establishing a joint venture between Bucharest Mechanical Plant and US General Dynamics Company, which will produce armored vehicles for the Romanian Armed Forces, according to a government press release.
Romanian PM Mihai Tudose makes disputes with party leader Dragnea public. Details of reshuffling plans already appear Romanian deputy prime minister Marcel Ciolacu would take over as Development minister after PM Mihai Tudose would oust incumbent minister Sevil Shhaideh, sources have told HotNews.ro. Shhaideh is one of the few ministers targeted for a government reshuffle of which Tudose spoke of in a TV interview on Monday night, suggesting major splits between him and the leader of the governing Social Democratic Party (PSD), Liviu Dragnea.
OPINION ​Has Social Democratic leader Dragnea's attack on Prime Minister Tudose started? Four full months have yet to pass since Liviu Dragnea, the leader of Romania's governing Social Democrats, took down his own government, and he appears to have triggered the attack on incumbent PM Mihai Tudose, installed in the summer after the fall of his predecessor Sorin Grindeanu. All the information obtained by HotNews.ro and confirmed by several sources indicates that conflicts have broken out between the Dragnea and Grindeanu, and the last major reason for the dispute would be the PM’s refusal to sign the Constitutional Court intimation on the conflict between the state powers after National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) started the investigation into Belina case.
Report: Romanian Health minister Bodog "plagiarized" two-thirds of his PhD in economic sciences Romania's Health minister Florian Dorel Bodog appears to have plagiarized 147 of the 232 pages of his PhD thesis in economics, entitled "Management and marketing of sanitary units", which he held at West University of Timisoara (UVT) in 2008, writes Romanian journalist Emilia Sercan for Pressone.ro. Minister Bodog reacted by saying that he complied with all the ethical and professional standards and that the suspect segments of his thesis were originally his, and he allowed them to be used in other educational papers.

Hungarian PM Orban: I managed to build a personal relationship with the president of Romania's governing party, and that seems to offer hope for the future

Hungarian PM Viktor Orban has spoken again about his closer relationship with the leader of Romania's governing Social Democrats, Liviu Dragnea. Asked by Radio Kossuth what progress has been made in the case of a high school for ethnic Hungarians in the Romanian city of Targu Mures, Orban said: "We have advanced a little in Romania because we have managed to build a personal relationship with the president of the ruling party, and that seems to offer hope for the future."
US Ambassador to Romania in harsh criticism of politicians who embrace economic nationalism and target multinational companies US Ambassador to Bucharest Hans Klemm criticized harshly on Monday the politicians and journalists who promote economic nationalism, "who oppose liberalism and who espouse economic nationalism once again seek to attack and demonize Europe’s Jews and Jews outside of Europe". He made the statements in a speech marking the National Day of Commemorating the Holocaust.
OPINION Has Romania changed its foreign policy? Speeding up towards the Visegrad group Information keeps coming that Romania is flirting with the Visegrad group (Hungary, Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia- V4), seen in the EU as the club of problem countries, with serious sideslips from the rules of Brussels. In the last several days alone, the following pieces of news crowded up: Foreign Minister Theodor Melescanu said unequivocally at the Cluj meeting with his Hungarian counterpart, Peter Szijjarto, that Romania is interested in collaborating with the Visegrad group of countries; and Romania is said to be about to attend a meeting of the V4 countreis in Budapest next week.
​​VIDEO INTERVIEW. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg: Romania is key ally in intelligence and cyber sectors / We see reports from several NATO allies of Russian attempts to interfere in domestic processes / Corruption undermines trust in democratic institutions NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg welcomes Romania's contribution as a key NATO ally in the sectors of cyber security and intelligence, but also for its decision to invest 2% of the GDP in defence. In an interview for HotNews.ro, he announces that 10 NATO member countries will contribute with troops to the Craiova-based multinational brigade. He also warns "that corruption is undermining the trust in our democratic institutions".
Major Romanian trade union protest against government, opposition, NGOs in Bucharest About four thousand people protested in Bucharest Victory Square, in front of the Romanian Government HQ on Wednesday. The protest organized by Cartel Alfa, a major trade union, brought together employees from health, transport, police, steel and petrochemical sectors. Trade unionists from the mining, energy, insurance and banking sectors were also there. The people gathered in the market are equipped with whistles, drums, banners and flags to protest a series of welfare policies announced by the government.
Romania sentenced by ECHR for failing to protect child from father's beatings Romania was sentenced by the European Court Of Human Rights on Tuesday for violating the right not to be subjected to torture and the right to a fair trial under the European Convention on Human Rights in the case of an underaged person in which the state authorities proved incapable of defending him from his father's aggressions, NGO APADOR-CH has announced.
Former minister Iordache who sparked massive Bucharest protests now named in key justice position in Romanian Parliament Former Romanian Justice minister Florin Iordache, who earlier this year was forced to resign following unprecedentely huge protests against his attempts to push laws to stifle the fight against corruption, has now been named in a key position in the Parliament, to supervise changes to Justice laws.
Romanian Constitutional Court decision: top graft prosecutor is required to appear before parliamentary investigation commission on the 2009 elections The Romanian Constitutional Court admitted on Tuesday a constitutional legal conflict between the Parliament and the Public Ministry, represented by the National Anti-Corruption Department (DNA), "generated by the refusal of the Chief Prosecutor of the DNA to appear before the Special Investigation Commission of the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies for the verification of issues related to the organization of the 2009 elections and the result of the presidential election," the Court said in a statement on Tuesday. Observers say the decision is serious as it means MPs, many of whom are politicians who face judicial issues including corruption accusations, can summon prosecutors and other magistrates to answer their questions in the Parliament.
​OPINION How much can Romania count on EU, US to help with its problems ​Everyone out there is seeing serious troubles taking place in Romania in recent months, but is trying not to officially turn Romania into a "case". From that moment on, everything would get complicated. In Brussels, where I spent a few days recently, there are quite a few other priorities now: Poland, Hungary and, more recently, Spain. No one wants  another problem child. Once recognized and verbalized, the issue should be  solved, but the European Union has so far been proven powerless in the cases mentioned above.
Romanian Foreign Ministry confirms Romanian citizen wounded in Las Vegas attack The Romanian Foreign Ministry confirmed on Monday evening that a Romanian citizen was wounded in the deadly armed attack that took place in Las Vegas and was treated in a hospital in the region. The person will be visited by Romania's honorary consul there as soon as his condition allows it, it announced.

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