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Banned media access to events organized by the Romanian Presidency of the EU Council

Palatul Parlamentului - Consiliul UEI applied online for accreditation, and I received confirmation as a journalist. The press facilities offered at the events organized by the Romanian Presidium of the EU Council are listed on the website: 250 work spaces with broadband, phone and ISDN connections, 5 all-in-one printers, 20 soundproofed media booths with A/V editing facilities and broadband, free WiFi, 250 lockers, first aid point.

I was rather amazed by such an organization, but I said that, as far as the European Union is concerned, the Romanian officials want to offer the best.

A few days ago, I have received the emails, then the email to confirm for the first event, European Day of Data Protection taking place in the Human Rights Hall of the Parliament Palace. I reconfirmed, I went two days before the event to take the badge, and I went decided to take notes about everything that’s more interesting during this event, and possibly to interview one of the participants on the EU annual data protection management plan on 2019.

Pliant ANSPDCPAt the entrance to the Palace of Parliament, after a correct check, I am led by an organizer on the opposite side of the Palace. I climb the stairs, to the left, climb, up, climb, climb… After I barely breathed because of the effort, we reach a small room with four small tables, each table with a map with two leaflets, some cookies and water. It seemed to me that the girl who led me showed me the front door as the hall where the event is held. I’m trying to get in, but it’s closed. I’m a little puzzled. I turn around and meet a national television representative. I ask where the event room is, and he tells me that he learned that the press has no access to the event, so they took an interview in the above room.

I think he misunderstood it, so when the girl who brought me is coming again, leading other press representatives in the room, I ask her about the access. She confirms that the press has no access to the event, but tells me I can take an interview, to one of the tables, of one of her colleagues. I reply that maybe later on, wondering what her colleague might tell her about the intentions of European officials on data protection management.

The informal meeting of defense ministers from the EU member states will take place in two days. I understand that even then the press will not be allowed access to the event. No problem, I will ask the girl from the front door about the EU defense strategy.

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