REGIONAL EUROPE
Bucharest hosts biggest Christmas tree in Europe The National Day of Romania was celebrated, besides the traditional way, with the inauguration of the biggest Christmas tree in Europe on the evening of December 1. The tree is decorated with some 2,300,000 lights in Unirii’s Square. The evening was market by music shows and fireworks by the tree.
Romanian film director Cristian Mungiu awarded with the European Oscar equivalent in Berlin The movie 4 months, 3 weeks and 2 days by Romanian film director Cristian Mungiu received the European Film Academy award in Berlin on Saturday night. It is the first time that the European version of the American Oscar goes to a Romanian director for the first time. The movie competed against The Queen by Stephen Fears, which won the best European actrice and best music award.
Vatican supports new Romanian Orthodox diocese in Italy His Eminence Monsignor Vincenzo Paglia, bishop of Terni and president of the Episcopal Commission for Ecumenism and Dialogue within the Italian Episcopal Conference, explained in an interview for HotNews.ro the position Vatican has on the new Romanian Orthodox diocese, opened in Italy, calling it a wonderful initiative. At the moment, the Roman - Catholic church offers Romanians in Italy quite an important number of churches for holding their sermons.
European Commission gives green light to 4.2 billion fund for human resources projects The European Commission has approved an operational programme addressing the development of human resources in Romania in 2007-2013, a press release of the Labor Ministry in Bucharest says. The sectoral operational programme POS-DRU lets future beneficiaries access funds amounting to 4.25 billion euro for projects related to such issues as modernizing educational and professional training systems, the adaptibility of workers and enterprises, promoting active measures of employment and the social inclusion of vulnerable groups.
Romania needs wider debates on European issues, Commissioner Orban says European Commissioner Leonard Orban said in statements made for HotNew.ro in Brussels on Monday that he regretted the low turnout at the first European Parliament elections that took place in the country on Sunday. But he said the poll was fully democratic and proved a strengthening democracy in Romania.
Romanians to double their presence in Spain in ten-month time Romanian immigrants are still in the spotlight in Spain, as daily El Pais quoted by Romanian monitoring agency Rador extensively deals with migration effects. The Spanish government imposed a two year moratorium on workers from new member states starting with January 1, 2007 to avoid labor market disequilibrium if Romanians migrate in great numbers.
Georgia president resigns in order to participate in new elections Georgia president Mikhail Saakashvili has resigned on Sunday, in order to be able to participate in the presidential campaign for the elections in January, BBC informs. According to Georgian legislation, Saakashvili can't participate in the campaign as long he is still head of state.Parliament Speaker Nino Burdzhanadze has temporarily taken over presidential duties in Georgia.
Sleepiest Romanian MEPs In its first year as a EU member, Romania had a mediocre presence in Brussels and Strasbourg. Out of 35 Romanian members of the European Parliament (MEPs), only 8 may boast on their rich activity, 10 had a mediocre activity and 17 slept just as well as they do back home. Despite their poor participation, some intend to run for a new mandate.
Romania may be included in future Gazprom gas pipeline track A new gas pipeline, South Stream, may be built, crossing Romania on its road towards the Western Europe, said the president of the Italian energy group ENI, Paolo Scaroni, after meeting Gazprom officials in Moscow. The crossing of the Romanian land is a new idea, since all previous projects seemed to exclude it. South Stream will cross the Black Sea, transiting Bulgaria, then dividing in two lines, one towards the North, the other towards the South of Western Europe.
Kazakh President in official visit to Bucharest Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev starts an official visit to Bucharest on Thursday, the Romanian Presidency has announced. His visit to Romania is part of a tour of several European Union countries including Slovakia and Hungary at a time when the EU is trying to cut down its energy dependence on Russia and looking for alternative sources of energy supplies.
Italy president: "Expelling 200,000 Romanians would be the same thing as a deportation" Expelling 200,000 Romanians from Italy would be equal to „a deportation outside any legal frame”, says the Italian president, Giorgio Napolitano, in an interview for German daily Die Zeit, quoted by Antena 3. In the interview, Napolitano says that he will not accept such a solution, not as head of state, nor in a personal name.
Brussels to involve in regulating Romania real estate credits After witnessing the ongoing real estate credit crisis in the United States, the European Union may introduce a series of obligatory rules for the way real estate credits are accepted, in order to make sure that such loans are offered in a transparent way, Reuters informs, quoting a document issued by the European Commission.Charlie McCreevy, Interior Market Commissioner, may introduce the draft next month. Hotnews.ro received the feedback of Romanian analysts.
Romanian Foreign Ministry to hire Gypsies at consulates in Italy, Spain The Romanian Foreign Ministry will hire Gypsies at the country's consulates in Italy and Spain to provide a better link between the authorities and the communities living there. The new employees will not be brought from Romania but they will be selected from Romanian communities living legally in the two countries.
Romanian diaspora in Italy claim organizational flaws in preparations for voting Romanians in Italy and San Marino are complain of the bad organization of voting polls in the two countries for Romania's first European Parliament elections due to take place this weekend. The Romanian voting station in Padova has no address or telephone number listed on the Foreign Ministry’s website.
Europe sees first natural gas line off Russian land Monday, November 18, Europe will see the opening of its first natural gas pipeline providing gas from the Caspian Sea area without crossing Russian territory. The natural gas is extracted in Azerbaijan and crosses Turkey, reaching Greece.Leaders from Greece, Turkey, USA, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Italy will attend the official opening of the project, known as the “South European Gas Ring”.
Three Italians arrested for torching Romanians’ building in Naples Three Romanian couples were one step away from being burnt alive in their own home, in a fancy Naples neigborhood. A fire broke open in the building, Il Corriere del Ticino informs in its online edition. The Romanians awoke because of the smoke and managed to get out alive, although one of them was injured.
EP prepares resolution for the Italian expelling decree The European parliament will issue on Thursday a resolution on the Italian decree allowing the expelling of EU citizens that committed crimes on Italian soil. The decree came after the alleged crime of Romanian Romulus Mailat rendered most of the public opinion hostile towards Romanians.
EC report: 200 airlines mislead clients through websites At least 200 Internet pages belonging to European airlines mislead the users, a study conducted by the European Commission informs, as quoted by the BBC. According to the document, the web pages post prices that don't include taxes and various other obligatory expenses, or "free flights" that eventually prove not to be quite "free".
30% of EU-level farming subsidies are problematic. Romania is a negative example Almost 30% of the farming subsidy requests at the European Union level for which payments were made in 2006 contained errors, a European Court of Auditors report published on Tuesday showed. The most serious issues were found in Greece for the fifth consecutive year.
Russian company Gazprom claims a third of the European market At the 20th World Energy Congress opened in Rome on Sunday, Russia presents a unitary stand for the first time. Gazprom announced in the early part of the Congress that through long term contracts it wants to cover almost a third of the European market.

ESRI

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