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What the newspapers say: June 11, 2007

Luni, 11 iunie 2007, 0:00

Romanian newspapers on Monday discuss the violence that almost engulfed a small scale but significant gay parade in Bucharest this weekend. One paper digs further in a scandal involving the head of the French Senate and his Romanian counterpart over the establishment of a Carrefour outlet in Romania.

And another paper reports that the arrest in Bucharest of two foreigners accused of delivering weapons to terrorist organization was part of a US plan in this regard.

Evenimentul Zilei reports that the violence marking a gay march in Bucharest on Saturday place Romania along countries such as Russia or Poland when it comes to the acceptance of sexual minorities - and thus in antithesis to Western countries.

The newspaper reports tha only several hundred people attented the gay march and were protected by many more police, a number as high as 100 people were retained for acts of violence.

According to the newspaper, the Romanian “New Right”, a fascist group, were to blame for much of the violence - but also the Antifa (Antifaschismus) Militants, an anti-discrimination movement very active in the West.

Cotidianul mocks the entire situation created by the protests and counter-protests on Saturday and shows that the number of police was three times as high as that of the gay protesters, while the anti-gay marchers were scattered shortly with only a couple of tear gas grenades.

“Four gendarmes per head of homosexual at the Gayfest parade”, Gandul also reports, accounting that the number of participants to the parade was half the number of last year’s participants, when extreme violence occurred, while that of police almost doubled: 800 gendarmes for 200 marchers.

And the paper quotes a transsexual calling himself Lolita who regrets the state of Romanian gay events comparing them to those in Madrid that “last a month and lure millions of tourists”.

But Romania libera blames the small participation on heavy rain but also notes that much of those attending the event were middle-class supporters of civil rights and not proper gay.

Meanwhile, the same Romania libera digs further in a series of investigations led by French newspaper Le Monde last week, when a huge corruption scandal was reported according to which French Senate speaker Churstian Poncelet allegedly pressed his Romanian counterpart Nicolae Vacaroiu in a case related to the establishment of a Carrefour megastore.

The Romanian newspaper writes that the case involves 35 hectares of land in the vicinity of Iasi, a major city in NE Romania. The land was claimed by no less than 14 people who said it was confiscated from them by the communist regime. And Romania libera writes that the case involved both people close to regional Liberal mogul Relu Fenechiu and the Social Democratic mayor of Iasi.

Elsewhere in the papers today, Evenimentul Zilei reports that the arrest in Romania of two men - a Palestinian and a Chilean - charged with delivering weapons to terrorist organzations was part of a well-planned scheme of US agents. According to the paper, the two were lured to Romania by American undercover agents.

The US worked with the same Romanian officers that collaborated with them in the arrest of the King of Heroin” Hossein Karini recently.

Also in the papers on Monday:
Gandul reports that heat provider Radet has announced it would leave half of Bucharest without hot water for a month this summer.

According to the paper, Radet general manager Virgil Ramba made the decision without any public consultations or asking the town hall approval, arguing that major maintenance works are needed at the city water pipelines.
Romania libera notes that less than a month before the first structural funds programs are due to become operational, Romanian entrepreneurs are wholly unprepared to access the money.

A national-level investigation shows that only 2.29% of Romanian small and medium companies are in process of elaborating projects to access EU funds.
Gandul reports a major seaweed “invasion” is affecting the Romanian seaside these days as the Black Sea waves have been pushing tons of seaweed onto the shore.

According to the newspaper, workers have so far collected about a third of the seaweed that waves piled up on the shore in many Romanian resorts - that is, some 2,600 cubic meters of plants. The cause of the invasion is thought to be the higher-than-average temperatures in the area.

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