Tag Archives: LATVIA

The Baltic States for the first time refused electricity from Russia

Latvia, without explanation, stopped commercial imports from Russia for two days, on April 8 and 11, during tests on disconnecting power lines between Belarus and Lithuania to check the power systems before the full exit of the Baltic countries from the BRELL energy ring (Belarus, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania).

These days in Russia, due to the termination of export supplies, demand and prices for electricity have fallen. In the Baltic States, the opposite situation occurred, for example, on April 8, Lithuania increased purchases of more expensive electricity from Poland and Sweden to compensate for imports.

The authorities of Lithuania, Estonia, and Latvia have decided to abandon the supply of electricity from Russia and Belarus and disconnect from the BRELL power ring in 2019. Instead, the countries intend to synchronize their energy systems with European countries and connect to the EU networks by 2025. At the same time, the Baltic countries are already connected to the EU energy system through Poland (LitPol Link), Sweden (NordBalt), and Finland (Eastlink 1 and Eastlink 2).

In January, it became known that the operator of the main networks of Finland, Fingrid, presented four plans for the development of the country’s energy system, three of which provide for a complete rejection of imports through the development of wind and solar power plants. The country is the largest buyer of Russian energy, the volume of supplies in 2020 reached 22 billion rubles, which is more than a third of all exports. However, in two plans, Finland in the future has planned to completely abandon the energy bridge passing through Vyborg.

Lexus with the President of Latvia was in an accident in Riga

The car of the President of Latvia Egils Levits was involved in an accident at an intersection in Riga. The Lexus LS of the head of state crashed into the car of his security.

As a result of sudden braking, there was a small collision between a Lexus and a Volkswagen Touareg, in which the president’s security was located. No one was injured in the accident, which didn’t even affect the politician’s schedule.

Austria threatens to block the EU’s purchase of 100 million doses of vaccines

Austria is threatening to block the European Commission’s purchase of another 100 million doses of BioNTech / Pfizer vaccines if Vienna does not receive more vaccines.

This is reported by Politico with reference to diplomats from three EU countries.

The move is the latest escalation tactic by Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, who has campaigned for his country to get a bigger share of vaccines in the EU, even though data suggests Austria is not among the countries most in need.

The EU may receive 10 million doses of BioNTech / Pfizer in the coming months as part of a second contract with the German-American manufacturer to purchase an additional 100 million vaccines — in addition to the 500 million already ordered.

The 100 million doses were originally expected to be delivered by the end of 2021, but the company said it could deliver 10 million doses by June 30. The announcement started a fight between EU countries over the distribution of vaccines based on population size.

That fight dominated a summit of EU leaders on Thursday, and Kurz repeated his demand for more doses. While the summit ended with the leaders confirming the distribution based on population size, the leaders also instructed the EU ambassadors to address the issue of 10 million doses, leaving open the possibility that the countries most in need of vaccines will receive more.

Austria did not wait for the ambassadors to hold a discussion before stepping up the pressure.

At a meeting of the EU’s vaccine steering committee on Friday morning, Austria again demanded additional doses, this time with a threat: it will block the European Commission’s purchase of 100 million doses if Vienna does not get what it wants.

Diplomats from several EU countries have expressed outrage at the threat to Austria — and the possibility of losing 100 million doses if the purchase option is not used by mid-April.

One EU diplomat expressed anger that Austria was blocking 10 million doses to member states “ in dire need of them, such as Latvia and Bulgaria.”

“This shows that Kurz is willing to put the lives of 50 million Europeans at risk in order to get something that he doesn’t even need,” the diplomat said.

Another diplomat said that Austria has little respect for the needs of other countries.

In terms of the total number of coronavirus cases per capita since March 2020, Austria is in the bottom half of the list of EU countries, while the number of daily cases in the country is slightly below the EU average.

A resident of Athens died half an hour after the AstraZeneca vaccine

A 64-year-old resident of Athens died half an hour after being vaccinated with AstraZeneca, the Greek newspaper Proto Tema reports.

The woman was vaccinated in the clinic and then spent another 15 minutes there, as prescribed by the rules. About half an hour later, she was found unconscious in a nearby park. Medical workers tried to treat her on the spot but to no avail.

The National Vaccination Committee said there was no link between the woman’s death and vaccination. It is noted that the deceased suffered from chronic diseases.

Greek doctors also note that cases of thrombosis after the AstraZeneca vaccination were recorded 7-14 days after the introduction of the vaccine.

After the information about the formation of blood clots in patients vaccinated with the AstraZeneca vaccine, and several fatal cases, European countries began to massively abandon this vaccine.

Vaccination with the drug has been suspended in 24 countries, including Lithuania, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Slovenia, Portugal, Cyprus, Sweden, Latvia, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Denmark, Iceland, and Norway.

Italy and France have announced their readiness to resume vaccination of AstraZeneca

The authorities of Italy and France announced their readiness to resume the use of the coronavirus vaccine, which was created by the British-Swedish company AstraZeneca, in the vaccination campaigns of their countries. This is reported on the website of the Italian government.

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi held a telephone conversation with French President Emmanuel Macron. They discussed the suspension of the AstraZeneca drug in some European countries. “This is a temporary precautionary measure that will last until Thursday, March 18, until the analysis of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) is completed,” the report said.

If the EMA gives a positive verdict on the drug, Italy, and France are ready to “immediately return to its use”.

20 European countries have decided to ban the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine. The authorities of Austria, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, and Spain have partially or completely stopped vaccination. The cause was the occurrence of thrombosis in the vaccinated.

At the same time, the company stated about the safety of the vaccine. AstraZeneca explained that a detailed study of the health status of more than 17 million people vaccinated in the EU and the UK with the coronavirus drug showed no data on an increased risk of pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis, or thrombocytopenia.