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Ion Jinga, Permanent Representative of Romania to the United Nations: Romania is an example in peacekeeping operations

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Ambassador Ion Jinga, Permanent Representative of Romania to the United Nations, delivered a speech in the Security Council, in the public debate organized by the French presidency of the Security Council on „Protection of civilians in peacekeeping operations ”.rp_ion-jinga-wiki-228x300.jpg

The primary responsibility to protect the civilian population during wars and conflicts belongs to States, but when national authorities are unable or unwilling to fulfill their responsibility, then the international community must intervene. In cases where atrocity crimes are committed, accountability is crucial. This is why Romania endorsed the French-Mexican initiative that permanent members of the UN Security Council should voluntarily agree to refrain from using their veto in situations involving mass atrocities crimes, and we joined the Code of Conduct proposed by Liechtenstein on the Security Council action against genocide, crimes against humanity or war crimes.

Pointing out that a necessary condition for the protection of civilian is to ensure proper preparation of the personnel sent in  peacekeeping operations, that must be trained to interact with local populations and civil society organizations, primarily those dedicated to respecting the rights of women and children. Ambassador Ion Jinga gave the example of how this training is being done  in Romania.

„Romanian experience proves the benefits of mixed teams, where female members of peacekeeping operations interact with women and vulnerable individuals from local communities. Complementary between training courses provided both at national and international level, in a way that they can offer to peacekeepers the skills to identify early warning indicators of potential risk for atrocity crimes, is also important.
For instance, prior to their deployment in peacekeeping operations, Romanian troops attend a three months period of strict training which includes protection of civilians and respect for human rights. As a result, in 25 years of continuous presence in UN peacekeeping missions and with a total of more than ten thousands Blue Helmets all over the world, Romanians have never been involved in incidents of disrespect of the civilian population. Currently, we are present with military, police and close protection officers in ten peacekeeping operations and in two special political missions.

At the same time, we must not neglect the serious danger peacekeepers continue to face to fulfill their mandates in some of the most dangerous parts of the world. They risk so much to advance peace in profoundly hostile environments, and we pay tribute to the men and women who so admirably dedicate their lives to protect the lives of others. Unknown by the public opinion, criticized sometimes for not doing more, many of them made their ultimate sacrifice. In 2015 only, 129 Blue Helmets died in mission and, unfortunately, others followed this year.”

Romania’s Permanent Representative to the UN condemned the deliberate involvement of the civilians, schools and hospitals in conflict, a phenomenon that happens increasingly more frequently and that must be stopped. Reaffirming Romania’s support for the principles of independence, neutrality and impartiality of humanitarian activities, he also stressed the importance of prevention and identification of negotiation  in finding political solution that meets the root causes of conflicts.

„To limit the number of victims both among civilians and peacekeepers, a renewed focus has to be on conflict prevention and mediation. From this perspective, negotiated political solutions, early warning mechanisms to anticipate risks of atrocities, accepting the norms of Responsibility to Protect, and respect of the Kigali Principles on the protection of civilians in conflicts, are part of the solution. At present, 29 countries, including Romania, have endorsed the Kigali Principles, accounting for more than 40,000 troops serving under the UN flag”, said ambassador Ion Jinga stressing the role of prevention and mediation.

„Effective protection of civilians in armed conflicts needs an enhanced cooperation with regional and sub-regional organizations, because of their knowledge of the cultural, social and historical regional realities. The African Union and the European Union are two good examples, both organizations being strategic partners of the UN in the peacekeeping efforts”, concluded the permanent representative.”

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MEP Vasile Blaga: Commission’s centralised approach on procuring COVID-19 vaccines shows us the advantage of Romania’s membership of the European Union

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©Vasile Blaga/ Facebook

Commission’s centralised approach on procuring COVID-19 vaccines shows us the advantage of Romania’s membership of the European Union, said MEP Vasile Blaga (PNL, EPP) in a statement for CaleaEuropeană.ro.

He emphasized tha membership of the European Union ”helps us to return to a normal life as soon as possible, through vaccination, but also to overcome the COVID-19 crisis”.

”I cannot help noticing that regarding the COVID-19 crisis, European Union has address the needs of the Member States. I am talking about UE’s centralised approach on procuring COVID-19 vaccines, not only about EU’s budget and COVID-19 recovery package. European Commission approved a contract with pharmaceutical companies BioNTech and Pfizer, which provides for the purchase of 300 million doses on behalf of all EU Member States and, last week, Ursula von der Leyen announced that European Commission approved a sixth contract under the EU Vaccines Strategy, this time with the pharmaceutical company Moderna, which provides for the purchase of 160 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine. It is a clear signal that the European Union is determined to firmly manage the COVID-19 pandemic, unitary and determined”, explained the MEP Vasile Blaga.

The European Commission approved on November 25 a sixth contract under the EU Vaccines Strategy, this time with the pharmaceutical company Moderna, the Commission said in a statement.

The contract provides for the initial purchase of 80 million doses on behalf of all EU member states, plus an option to request up to a further 80 million doses, to be supplied once a vaccine has proven to be safe and effective against Covid-19.

The contract with Moderna will enlarge the already broad portfolio of vaccines to be produced in Europe, including the contracts signed with AstraZeneca, Sanofi-GSK, Janssen Pharmaceutica NV, BioNTech-Pfizer and the contract approved with CureVac.

This diversified vaccines portfolio will ensure Europe is well prepared for vaccination, once the vaccines have been proven to be safe and effective.

Romania’s finance minister Florin Citu said on November 25 that the ministry has made a 12 million euro ($14.27 million) advance payment to the European Commission for COVID-19 vaccines.

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S&D Group and MEP Victor Negrescu host an international conference on the future EU budget and the European Recovery Plan (LIVE, 19th November, 11:00)

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The Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament is organizing on Thursday, at the initiative of MEP Victor Negrescu (PSD, S&D), an international conference on the future European budget and on the economic recovery plan.

The conference, which will start at 11:00 (Bucharest time) and will be broadcast LIVE on CaleaEuropeană.ro, is an invitation to dialogue on how European funds should be used at European and national level.

At the conference organized with the support of the Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats on the future EU Budget and the European recovery plan, the European Commissioner for Budgets, Johannes Hahn, will address a video message. Also, among the participants will be Margarida Marques, MEP and rapporteur of the S&D Group for the future multi-annual budget, Dan Nica, leader of the Romanian Delegation to the S&D Group, Radu Magdin, study coordinator, Roxana Mînzatu, member of the Romanian Parliament, European funds expert and former Minister of European Funds, and Adrian Câciu, economic analyst.

In order to set out these objectives, the S&D MEP Victor Negrescu initiated a complete and complex study on the impact of the European relaunch plan on Romania and the identification of development objectives that the progressive group in the European Parliament will support at the level of the European institution.

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Dacian Cioloș, Renew Europe’s leader: Maia Sandu’s remarkable victory, clear proof that the Republic of Moldova’s future lies in Europe

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© Photo Collage (Image source: European Parliament & Renew Europe)

The Renew Europe Group in the European Parliament welcomes the preliminary results of the presidential elections in the Republic of Moldova and congratulates Maia Sandu for becoming the first woman elected to the highest-ranking position of the state, the third largest EP political group says in a press release.

Maia Sandu’s pro-European agenda and her determination to tackle corruption and unite the country are the key elements of her emphatic victory over the pro-Russia President Igor Dodon.

The President of Renew Europe Group, Dacian Cioloș (USR PLUS, Romania), said:

“Maia Sandu’s remarkable victory in the presidential elections is clear proof that the Republic of Moldova’s future lies in Europe. Through their vote, the citizens of Moldova endorsed the consolidation of democratic institutions and practices, the strengthening of the rule of law and the fight against corruption as national priorities for the years to come. It won’t be an easy path, but I am confident that with the full support of the European Union, including Renew Europe group, Moldova will get gradually closer to European values, develop its economy and ensure prosperity for its citizens.”

Renew Europe MEP, Dragoş Tudorache (USR PLUS, Romania), the European Parliament’s rapporteur on Moldova, added:

“Just as Maia Sandu’s victory is a landmark for the democratic evolution of the Republic of Moldova, her mission is equally historic, challenging, but also transformative for the whole society. If this transformation succeeds, if this mission is successful, Maia Sandu may be the one bringing the Republic of Moldova closer to the European Union than it has ever been.

The reform agenda, which Maia Sandu embraced decisively already as a Prime Minister, requires political will, expertise and financial support. We, the European partners of the Republic of Moldova, shall stand by Maia Sandu in the ambitious mandate entrusted by the Moldovan people, whether it is the fight against corruption, institutional reforms, the reconstruction of public administrations, or to increase the economic exchanges with the EU.”  

Renew Europe MEP Ramona Strugariu, (USR PLUS, Romania), Vice-Chair of the Delegation to the EU-Moldova Parliamentary Association Committee, commented:

“Maia Sandu’s victory is in fact the victory of a courageous, visionary and European Republic of Moldova, determined to fight for the values in which it believes. I am convinced that the first woman President in the country’s history will be able to steer firmly the Republic of Moldova towards European integration. It will not be an easy path, but we will support the country every step of the way in order to bring it in the European Union.”

MEP Hilde Vautmans (Open Vld, Belgium), Renew Europe Group’s Coordinator in the Foreign Affairs Committee, concluded:

“I congratulate Maia Sandu for this well-deserved victory, which will strengthen ties between the EU and Moldova and it will increase Moldova’s role in the Eastern Partnership. We must keep fighting for what brings us together in the benefit of Moldovan citizens.”

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