Romania puts a general in charge: emerging Europe this week

central Europe

Romania President Klaus Iohannis on Thursday appointed retired four-star Army General Nicolae Ciucă as Prime Minister-designate, instructing him to form a centrist government to end a month-long political stalemate. Ciucă, a member of the liberal party, briefly headed a caretaker government last year and has been defense minister since January. On Wednesday, Dacian Cioloș of the Union Save Romania (USR) failed to gain parliamentary support from lawmakers for his cabinet project.

Germany’s top security official on Wednesday proposed to introducePolish border patrols of the two countries to help crack down on illegal crossings into Germany by migrants from Belarus, but said no one intended to close the border. German authorities indicate that around 4,500 such crossings have been recorded since August. Many of them are Syrians and Iraqis who flew to Belarus in the hope of joining the European Union via Poland.

Poland Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki meanwhile attacked EU leaders at a session of the European Parliament on Tuesday, telling Ursula von der Leyen “we will not be blackmailed” after the President of the European Commission vowed to take action against Poland after the country’s highest court ruled on October 7 that key parts of EU law were incompatible with the Polish constitution. During a tense debate in Strasbourg, Morawiecki argued that the European Court of Justice was responsible for a “creeping revolution” that threatened to undermine Poland’s sovereignty.

A political outsider without political affiliation, Péter Márki-Zay, mayor of Hódmezővásárhely, a small town in the south Hungary, won a primary election to choose the Hungarian opposition prime minister candidate ahead of a parliamentary poll next year. Márki-Zay took a resounding victory in the second round of the primaries against center-left opponent Klára Dobrev. Dobrev immediately congratulated Márki-Zay, as did representatives of the six parties from all political backgrounds that make up Hungary’s United Opposition.

Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu and a business delegation will begin a visit to Prague on Saturday, Czech The Taiwanese Chamber of Commerce said on Tuesday a new indication of the warm relations between the European Union country and the autonomous island. In addition to the Czech Republic, the Taiwanese delegation must visit neighboring countries Slovakia, and Lithuania. The visit is likely to spark a strong reaction from China, which claims Taiwan’s democracy as its own territory.

Prague-based Rossum has announced a US $ 100 million Series A funding round, one of the largest Series A tours ever in Eastern Europe. The Czech start-up, founded in 2016 by three doctoral dropouts, aims to reinvent the way companies send documents to each other. “We believe that what RPA [robotic process automation] done for internal business processes really needs to be done for business-to-business communication, ”said Rossum co-founder and CEO Tomas Gogar.

Eastern Europe

Moldova has entered into an interim loan agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) worth approximately US $ 564 million over 40 months. Prime Minister Natalia Gavrilița said on Thursday that a first tranche of $ 81 million could be received from the Washington-based lender by the end of this year, once the IMF leadership and its board meet. in December.

Ukraine has enough gas in reserve to get through the winter period and expects foreign companies not to re-export the gas they keep in Ukrainian underground storage, the head of Ukrainian energy company Naftogaz said on Wednesday. “Gas that belongs to non-residents does not mean that it cannot be used (in the household) during the heating season,” Yuriy Vitrenko told reporters.

US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said on Tuesday that Russia was an obstacle to peace in eastern Ukraine and had no veto power. Ukraine aspirations to join NATO. During a visit to Kiev, at a time when Russia’s relations with the West are at an all-time low in the post-Cold War era, Austin said Ukraine must be able to decide its own policy. foreign policy and warned Moscow to end cyber attacks against the United States and its allies.

Old Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, who has been on hunger strike in prison for nearly three weeks, agreed to medical intervention while promising to continue his protest. Saakashvili’s lawyer Dito Sadzaglishvili read a letter from his client to reporters on October 20 in which Saakashvili said he was “ready to die” for his cause. Saakashvili was arrested on October 1 after announcing his return to Georgia after an eight-year absence. Saakashvili said the arrest was politically motivated.

Azerbaijan State security services have detained several Shiite clerics, including a well-known imam, as tensions with its southern neighbor, Iran, continue to escalate. Clerics and their families have themselves reported their detentions, while Azerbaijani officials have remained silent. In a live Facebook broadcast on October 19, cleric Ilgar Ibrahimoglu reported that law enforcement officers came to his home. In his statement, he suggested that his detention had a political basis.

North Eastern Europe

Latvia returned to confinement on Thursday due to the worsening coronavirus situation in the Baltic country where the vaccination rate is among the lowest in the European Union. Following an emergency government meeting on Monday evening, Latvian Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins said the lockdown – until November 15 – and the drastic measures accompanying it are needed as the pandemic continues to spread quickly, forcing hospital departments to fill up with Covid-19 patients amid rare health. care resources.

estonia The chief financial regulator has said he wants to revoke all currently issued digital currency licenses and start over, replacing the current regulatory regime with an entirely new structure. Matis Mäeker, head of Estonia’s Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), said the state should consider removing regulation “from zero and restarting licenses”, amid concerns over the impact of the sector and the risks of money laundering and other illegal activities. .

South Eastern Europe

The United States and the European Union on Wednesday expressed serious concerns over “divisive rhetoric” in Bosnia herzegovina and called on all parties to respect state institutions. The statement was released after lawmakers in Republika Srpska, the Serb-majority entity that is part of Bosnia and Herzegovina, passed new law that could undermine the country’s constitution.

A joint venture between US engineer Bechtel and Turkish entrepreneur Enka has secured a € 430 million loan guarantee with UK Export Finance (UKEF), the UK government’s export credit agency, to build a 112 km 5G highway at Serbia. The two-lane road will connect the central Serbian towns of Pojate and Preljina, and will connect with the north-south highway connecting Hungary and North Macedonia. It will also be linked to the trans-European corridors X and XI, which connect Austria to Greece and Italy to Romania.

Montenegro is expected to experience the highest economic growth in emerging Europe in 2021, according to the latest forecast from the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (wiiw). Montenegro’s economy is expected to grow by 8.4% this year, although it should be noted that the country’s economy, dependent on tourism, suffered the largest decline in the region’s GDP in 2020, of 15, 3%. This huge contraction means that pre-crisis levels will not be reached this year.

Albania announced Wednesday the launch of two satellites in space in 2022, in collaboration with SpaceX, based in California. “Albania in orbit, amazing but real,” Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama said in a video posted to his official social media, announcing that the country will launch two satellites into orbit in 2022. Albanian’s first satellite named “Albania 1 “will be sent into orbit in March 2022, followed by” Albania 2 “in June.

Central Asia

Uzbekistan holds a presidential election on Sunday with incumbent President Shavkat Mirziyoyev almost guaranteed to win a landslide against four stalking horses backed by parties loyal to the government. Two other potential candidates, linked to unregistered opposition parties, were barred from standing. Mirziyoyev is widely popular among voters, who appreciate his dynamic reforms – especially in the economy – which have transformed lives during his five years as president.

Kazakh President Qasym-Zhomart Toqaev warned of the repercussions of what he called “illegal public gatherings” ahead of protest rallies planned by exiled opposition politician Mukhtar Ablyazov. National and international human rights groups have criticized Kazakhstan’s new law on mass gatherings passed last year, saying it allows the government to maintain its strict control over peaceful gatherings. Speaking in a parliamentary session on Thursday, Toqaev played down those concerns while saying that “those who participate in illegal demonstrations will be prosecuted.”

The wife of a Turkmen An activist detained in Turkey and threatened with deportation said the Ashgabat government has handed Ankara a list of more than two dozen people it wants to arrest and remove for their activism. The Turkmen Helsinki Foundation (THF) said in a report that two other Turkmen opposition activists residing in Turkey – Ahmet Rahmanov and Kamil Abulov – had been arrested. the Turkmen government asked Ankara to arrest and deport.

Photo: Romanian Prime Minister designate Nicolae Ciucă (center). Laurentiu Turoi / Romanian Ministry of Defense.

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