Earthquakes of one sort and another in Romania, Portugal and Brazil

graph-27783_640There was an earthquake (or cutremur, in the local lingo) measuring 5.5 on the Richter scale in Romania yesterday. It was centred on Țifești, about 80 kilometres north-west of of Galați, and very close to the last reported earthquake in that country in October 2013.

Anyone who lives in an area that is prone to earthquakes – and there are many – should be aware of what actions are recommended should one hit. See “What to do in un cutremur or mysterious earthquake swarms“.

Political earthquake

Meanwhile, the German international broadcaster, Deutsche Welle (DW) is carrying an item “A political earthquake in Romania”, which gives an excellent analysis in English of Klaus Iohannes’s shock win in the Romanian presidential election. To hear Romanian journalist Lavinia Pitu’s views on the stunning political upset, go to the broadcast here.

Tremors in Portugal and Brazil

Meanwhile, political earthquake swarms are occurring in Portugal. Also yesterday, former prime minister José Sócrates was arrested along with three others as part of an investigation into tax fraud and money-laundering. Barely a week ago, Immigration Minister Miguel Macedo resigned amid a growing scandal over the country’s provision of  “golden visas” or fast-tracked resident permits to business figures.

Images from Pixabay

Images from Pixabay

In Brazil, meanwhile, there has been a massive corruption scandal at the oil giant, Petrobrás: many politicians and public figures are alleged to have received bribes or kickbacks on contracts. (The police investigation is known as Operação Lava Jato or Operation Car Wash, or Jet Wash). The scandal is putting immense pressure on Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, who once chaired the Petrobrás board. The weekly current affairs magazine Veja and newspapers such as Estadão de São Paulo are probing to see how much she knew and how far up the political and business ladders the kickbacks went, and there have been demonstrations in the streets about it too.

There will be a lot of interesting reading in Portuguese language newspapers for some time to come.


3 thoughts on “Earthquakes of one sort and another in Romania, Portugal and Brazil

  1. Those two noticias from Portugal are on the news here every day, but nobody’s ever interested in Romania 😦

    I listen to Spanish State Radio, and I can’t help but question how “impartial” they really are…. for example, you’ve probably heard of that new party Podemos, and although they won’t rubbish them outright on the radio, the connotations with which they surface in reporting are never positive. They are tarred with the “populist” brush, as if they were the same as the late Hugo Chavez’s lot. Thing is, Podemos has a very real chance of winning the elections next year. This is gonna be interesting…

    • Hi, yes you are right. Often the old school is very dismissive of the up and coming newcomers. I haven’t been following Spanish politics too much recently but will look out for it more. I think many countries need new political parties, if only just to scare the incumbents or duopolies out of their complacency and to inject new life and ideas into the local scene. Rattle the bastards, I say!

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