His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel, the Primate of the Romanian Orthodox Church, joined EU and Romanian leaders at the official launch of Romania’s first presidency of the bloc, which took place at the Romanian Athenaeum in Bucharest on Thursday, January 10, 2019.
Delivering speeches at the opening ceremony on behalf of Romania were the President of Romania Klaus Iohannis, PM Viorica Dancila, the President of the Senate of Romania Calin Popescu Tariceanu and others.
European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker, European Council president Donald Tusk and European Parliament president Antonio Tajani held uplifting speeches in front of a large audience at the Athenaeum, which included Romania’s political leaders, European Commission officials, ambassadors and other special guests.
They spoke about the need for unity both in Romania and in Europe. Tusk held his whole speech in Romanian and quoted Romanian poets and philosophers.
Romania took over the Rotating Presidency of the Council of the European Union for the first time since the accession to the EU on January 1, 2007.
The motto of the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU is “Cohesion, a common European value”.
On June 30, Romania will hand over the Rotating Presidency of the Council of the EU to Finland.
The official ceremony was followed by the inaugural concert offered by the EU Orchestra, composed of musicians from the 28 EU member-states.
The programme included Rhapsody no. 1, op. 11 by George Enescu and the 9th Symphony, op. 125, “Ode to Joy” (the anthem of the European Union) by Ludwig van Beethoven.
Photography courtesy of Presidency.ro