SPORTS

NEWS IN BRIEF

U Jolidon handball
players enter strike



The players of women’s handball club U Jolidon Cluj have notified the club’s leadership yesterday that they will go on strike because of the club’s failure to pay their salaries in the last two months. According to Mediafax, after the training session the players notified their head coach and their sports director that they have entered a strike. The players will show up at the sports hall but won’t take part in training sessions. ‘We promised them that they will be paid when they return from the training camp in Vatra Dornei. That was last week. Unfortunately a mix-up occurred; we relied on the funds that come from the mayoralty and those did not come on time. It’s a difficult time but a strike won’t solve the problems because there are unpaid salaries everywhere,’ Olga Stanciu, the representative of U Jolidon’s financer, stated.


Europa League
preparations



The Romanian teams are preparing for the 5th round of group games in the Europa League. Steaua, Dinamo, Timisoara and Cluj will face their group opponents today and on Thursday. The teams have no chances to qualify beyond the group stage. Thus, Steaua Bucharest will play at Tiraspol against Sheriff, while Timisoara will play at home against Ajax Amsterdam. Both teams are at the bottom of Group H and Group I respectively. On Thursday Dinamo will play against Sturm Graz, while CFR Cluj will play against FC Copenhagen. Dinamo is 3rd in Group F, while CFR Cluj is last in Group K.


FC Timisoara, new League I leader


5 teams are in a tie in the League I standings. FC Timisoara, CFR Cluj, Steaua Bucharest, Unirea Urziceni and FC Vaslui have 28 points and are followed by Rapid (27 points) and Dinamo (25 points).


Unirea Urziceni defeated Gloria Bistrita on Monday, score 2-0. The game counted for leg 15. FC Brasov defeated Politehnica Iasi, score 2-0. The games were tense. Despite being at the top of the League I standings Unirea threatens to no longer take part in the championship after the season break if Romanian referees will continue to be used for its games. Unirea manager Mihai Stoica has asked for foreign referees, claiming that his team has been disadvantaged several times. In the last game of the leg, Otelul Galati defeated Astra Ploiesti 3-2.


Penev banned from
traveling abroad



CSKA Sofia coach Lyuboslav Penev will miss his team’s Europa League match at Fulham this week because a Bulgarian court upheld his travel ban over unpaid bank loans, Mediafax informs. Bulgaria’s Interior Ministry had banned Penev from leaving the country for failing to settle a EUR 1.2 M debt owed to the local Corporate Investment Bank. Yesterday, a court in the city of Burgas ruled against Penev’s appeal, saying it was “lacking any substance.”


Marion Jones hopes for basketball redemption


Disgraced Olympic sprinter Marion Jones is hoping to make a sporting comeback in women’s professional basketball. The 34-year-old was released from prison last year after serving most of a six-month sentence for lying about her use of steroids and has been working out on the basketball court since October.Jones, who played basketball at the University of North Carolina and won a national championship, is hoping to pick up a deal in Europe and then sign for a WNBA team in time for the 2010. (Reuters)

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NEWS IN BRIEF

Number of new flu cases reaches 3,259


The Ministry of Health has informed on Monday that 65 new cases of A/H1N1 infections have been confirmed, with the total number of cases reaching 3,259.


In the last 24 hours cases have been confirmed in Arges County, Cluj County, Constanta County, Iasi County, Olt County, Prahova County, Suceava County, Ilfov County (1 case each), Bacau County, Ialomita County (3 cases each), Vaslui County (4 cases each) and Dambovita County (11 cases). 31 new cases have been confirmed in Bucharest. The Ministry of Health points out that school number 10 and school number 19 have been closed in Bucharest.

Young man dies after falling in precipice


A young man died on Monday evening after falling one hundred meters from the Cheile Ciutei Peak in Lepsa locality, Vrancea County, Mediafax informs. His lifeless body was recovered by the gendarmes. According to the Vrancea County Police, Ionut Nedelea (21) from Slobozia Bradului commune, and his colleague George Burlacu (29) from Sihlea commune, both of them workers in Lepsa, decided to climb on top of the Cheile Ciutei Peak on Monday.


Despite the fact that they lacked the proper gear the two young men reached the top of the peak but ran into trouble on their way down because the night had fallen. Ionut Nedelea lost his footing and fell into a precipice, dying on the spot.

Air flights disrupted by fog


Four air flights with the destinations Cluj, London, Athens and Budapest took off with a delay yesterday, from Henri Coanda Airport, because of the fog. For the same reason, another two flights from Athens landed later than scheduled. The Tarom flight Athens-Bucharest, which had to land at 9.00, arrived at 10.50h. Because of the fog, the flight was directed first to Constanta, and only afterwards it came to Bucharest. The Olympic flight Athens-Bucharest landed at 9.50, instead of 8.55. Because of the fog there were problems also with the take off.


Thus, Bucharest-Cluj flight which had to leave at 9.05 took off at 10.00.


The Bucharest-London flight with departure at 8.45, took off at 10.19, the Bucharest-Athens flight which had to take off at 9.35, left at 10.55, while the Bucharest-Budapest flight left at 11.08, instead of 10.35. In Bucharest, on the occasion of the National Day parade, the helicopters could not fly also because of the fog. Visibility was reduced also on several roads from the country.

Three Romanians sentenced in France for prostitution


A Romanian woman and two men of the same nationality were sentence to prison by the Correctional Tribunal from Narbonne for prostitution. The three had sent to Romania, in three months, the amount of EUR 20,000, ‘Independant’ reports, quoted by Mediafax. The three Romanians had been apprehended in September on RN 113, further to a raid by the French Gendarmerie.


The Romanians were living in the hotel Fonties-d’Aude. Initially, Marin Rostas, domiciled in Ireland, father of seven, had settled there with his girlfriend Gabriela Iftode, a striptease dancer. Rostas’ friend, Arpad Erdei, and his wife, who practiced prostitution as well, joined them.


The only one who recognized his deed was Arpad Erdei. In spite of the pleading by the three lawyers, the court sentenced Marin Rostas to four years in prison, forbidding him to come to France again. Gabriela received eight months in custody, while Arpad Erdei was sentenced to three years in prison.

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NEWS IN BRIEF

Iliescu: I don’t regret the execution of Ceausescu


PSD honourary president Ion Iliescu granted an interview to the daily ‘Adevarul,’ in which he spoke about the events in December 1989. Asked if he regretted the execution of Nicolae Ceausescu, Iliescu said: “There is nothing to regret. He paid, he deserved it, because he was the main person guilty of what happened. But, politically, it would have been preferable to have a normal lawsuit.” Iliescu characterized the lawsuit as “an exceptional one, in an exceptional situation.” The former president also stressed that any delay connected with the fate of Ceausescu would have cost human lives: “And I said, regardless of the conditions, a lawsuit, even an improvised one, is the legal form based on Ceausescu’s laws to make a dramatic decision.”

Nastase filed
criminal complaint in the case of the transcripts from ‘Curentul’



Adrian Nastase announced on his personal blog that on Monday he filed a criminal complaint in connection with the transcripts published by Curentul, calling them “fabrications.” The quoted daily published an informative note about which the journalists say that it allegedly belongs to SRI, in which the PSD leaders Mircea Geoana, Adrian Nastase and Ion Iliescu speak about distributing some companies to businessmen like Dan Voiculescu, Dinu Patriciu or Sorin Ovidiu Vantu. The SRI specialists analyzed the two pages published in the central media and attributed to it, resulting that they are “gross fabrications” and the notes do not look like those used by SRI, the chief of SRI Press Bureau, Sorin Sava, declared.

Fatuloiu, Titulescu promoted


IGPS chief Petre Toba, the chief of Bucharest Police Lucian Guran, DGIPI chief Stefan Zaharie Pop, the state secretaries in MAI Dan Fatuloiu and Marian Tutilescu, the chief of Jandarmerie Olimpiodor Antonescu are among those who were promoted through decrees signed on Monday by President Traian Basescu. The Head of State signed several decrees for the promotion of several generals/similar and the granting of the rank of brigadier general/similar to colonels/similar from the National Defence Ministry, Ministry of Administration and Interior, the Foreign Intelligence Service, the Guard and Protection Service, the Special Telecommunication Service.


Fatuloiu Dan Valentin (state secretary in the Public Order Department from the Ministry of Administration and Interior, former inspector general with IGPR), Tutilescu Marian Grigorie (state secretary in MAI, Schengen Department, former chief of Bucharest Police), Chesnoiu Niculae (chief of Financial Division from MAI) were promoted to the rank of police chief quaestors.

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BUSINESS

NEWS IN BRIEF

Dacia reports double sales in France
in November



The sales of Dacia vehicles in France almost doubled in November, to 90.4 percent, representing 3.4 percent of the local automotive market, Agerpres informs. During the same month, Renault sales registered 40 percent growth as well. The sales of new motor-vehicles in France went up 48.4 percent in November compared to November 2008, with PSA Peugeot Citroen and Renault reporting respective growth of 65.5 percent and 45 percent. The French Automobile Manufacturers’ Association shows new car sales in France went up for the seventh consecutive month in November and that, in the first 11 months of 2009, they were 7.6 percent bigger than in the equivalent period of 2008.


EADS may open
a factory in Romania



Aeronautical concern EADS is planning on opening a factory in Romania to produce aircraft metal and laminate parts, according to the Financial Times Deutschland, Agerpres reports. Production in a country where the cost of labour is low is a must for Premium Aerotec, the latest issue of the internal company newsletter states. The new plant to be developed in Romania will be the answer to the pressure Airbus puts on EADS to also deliver components at internationally competitive prices.


Mechel Campia Turzii – EUR 7 M investment


Russian metal group Mechel has completed investments totalling EUR 7 M in three new production lines for metal cables used in the construction industry, at its plant based in Campia Turzii which belongs to the Eastern-European steel producing division, Mediafax informs. The new production lines were opened on November 27, Mechel informs by press release. The fibres and cables to be manufactured along the two new production lines are used in concrete reinforcing, including in civil or industrial engineering in seismic regions.


Plannja – first
fabrication line
in Romania



Swedish company Plannja specializing in the manufacturing of profiled cladding of thin sheet of steel is formally launching on Thursday its first fabrication line in Romania, the result of an investment of approximately EUR 9 M, Mediafax informs. The production line is based in Racaciuni (Bacau County). The plan to open the factory had been made known in August 2008, when Plannja AB took over operations from the former authorized reseller of Plannja goods in Romania.

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POLITICS

NEWS IN BRIEF

Head of State sues Dinu Patriciu


President Traian Basescu has sued Dinu Patriciu and the Best Media Company yesterday, asking the District 1 court for damages of RON 1. Traian Basescu announced as early as last Saturday that he will sue Dinu Patriciu and the ‘Gardianul’ daily for ‘lying and faking video footage’ and asked the daily’s leadership why it did not subject the footage to an examination. The action was registered in court, with the first date set for April 21. ‘Gardianul’ daily published on Thursday, November 26, a video footage in which President Basescu appears to be hitting a child in the face during an electoral meeting in 2004. President Traian Basescu asked the National Forensic Institute on Monday morning to issue its professional opinion on whether the video footage contains traces of technical tampering.

APD condemns
the lack of ethics
in the campaign



Pro Democratia Association (APD) condemned on Wednesday the abusive use of the name of the institution by the fans of the candidate Traian Basescu, as an electoral instrument, on the site prodemocratiapentru.basescu/ro, blaming the absence of ethics and professionalism which defines the electoral campaign. “APD has seen amazed that its own name is abusively used by the sympathizers of the candidate Traian Basescu, as an electoral instrument on prodemocratiapentru.basescu.ro. This domain is actually hosted by GMP Advertising, a firm directly involved in the campaign of the present President,” reads a press release of the Association. According to the Association, “this immoral attempt completes the series of negative actions that have turned the present electoral campaign into an instrument for deception and manipulation of the candidates awaited at the vote on December 6.”

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NEWS IN BRIEF

Foreign Ministry
salutes entry into force
of Lisbon Treaty



The Foreign Affairs Ministry (MAE) salutes with special satisfaction the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty on December 1, 2009. MAE explains in a press release that the innovations contained in the treaty both at an institutional and European policy level will allow for the Union to be resized on the international stage, as well as a more effective approach to internal matters of interest to all citizens of Europe: climate changes, economic crisis or energy.


The Lisbon Treaty will give the Union consistency and enhanced international visibility. By establishing two new European top level leadership positions – a stable President of the European Council and a High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy of the Union, the Treaty is actually creating steady European interlocutors for all the Union’s foreign partners. By that, the EU will better consolidate its role as a major actor in the international arena and cope with global challenges and competition, MAE informs.

State Secretary Bogdan Aurescu attends OSCE Ministerial Council in Athens


Romania is represented to the 17th Ministerial Council of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) that commenced in Athens yesterday by a delegation headed by the Secretary of State for Strategic Affairs Bogdan Aurescu, the Foreign Ministry informs, according to Agerpres. ‘Romania attaches special importance to matters relevant to the European security architecture, the resolution of frozen conflicts, combating terrorism, as well as to other issues discussed in the OSCE framework such as the climate changes, prevention of human trafficking, or the sustainable integration of Roma,’ MAE reports.

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POLITICS

NEWS IN BRIEF

Nastase: ‘I am
prepared for being PSD president’



The President of the PSD National Council, Adrian Nastase, stated on Antena 3 TV, on Monday, that he was prepared for becoming the president of the party, adding that, as long as his colleagues were also ready to have him, ‘everything was in order’. Asked to answer a question on the TV programme’s blog about his readiness to become PSD president if Mircea Geoana is elected president of the country, first of all Nastase noted that, in his opinion, Geoana would be the next president of the country and, secondly, the matter of the PSD presidency was up to his colleagues. ‘I think you should let my colleagues think about that. I already have. (…) I am prepared. If my colleagues are also ready, ‘everything is in order,’ Nastase said.

Berceanu: Geoana
is a ‘lying pig’



Interim Transport Minister Radu Berceanu on Monday called Mircea Geoana ‘a lying pig’, in response to the PSD’s statements regarding him, suggesting that he had used over EUR 1 bln from the Ministry of Agriculture to balance the budget of the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure. ‘If he doesn’t know what he’s taking about, Mr. Geoana should look it up in the Official Journal. He has advisers and some young boys who can go up on the internet. For him to repeat that lie three times is just too much. Geoana is a lying pig. The first time I was more careful about my language, but I see he has no problem lying with nonchalance’, Radu Berceanu stated at a press conference in Iasi, according to Mediafax. PSD Iasi leader Gheorghe Nichita on Monday replied that Radu Berceanu was concluding his political career by calling M. Geoana ‘a lying pig’. Nichita also claimed he had been sworn at by PDL Vice-President Adriean Videanu in a text message. ‘Anyone can read desperation on the faces of the PDL leaders over losing the election. I am horripilate by Berceanu’s words. It’s an outrageous thing for one to go to an academic city like Iasi and say such things. Mircea Geoana is not just a candidate, he is also in the second most important office in the state as Speaker of the Senate. Berceanu is concluding his political career with this statement,’ Gheorghe Nichita said at a press conference.

Negoita’s mayoralty removes anti-Basescu street banner


The District 3 Mayoralty has ordered on Monday evening the removal of the elections street banner placed in front of the ‘Bucharest’ store, a banner that contained an anti-Basescu message. In reply, PSD Bucharest announced that it will sue District 3 Mayor Liviu Negoita and chief-architect Stefan Dumitrascu. ‘PSD Bucharest will file a criminal complaint against Mayor Negoita and Mr. Stefan Dumitrascu for flagrantly breaking the law. Their behaviour is in line with Mr. Traian Basescu who wants to build a dictatorship in Romania,’ Bogdan Georgescu, PSD Bucharest’s campaign director, stated. The huge street banner that parodies Traian Basescu’s electoral banners was placed on the building located close to Traian Basescu’s campaign headquarters. Under the title ‘They are the real majority!’ the banner shows Basescu pointing towards Berceanu, Costanda, Hayssam, Popoviciu, Udrea, Ridzi and Videanu. Below that image the banner reads: ‘Can you take five more years? Burn them!’ and shows three chili peppers. The chili pepper was one of the elements that Traian Basescu used in his previous campaigns.

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