Romania fires official for flag gift gaffe with Germany

AP News
Posted: Mar 11, 2015 10:05 AM
Romania fires official for flag gift gaffe with Germany

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — The Romanian Foreign Ministry fired its spokeswoman Wednesday after Germany's foreign minister was handed a gift with a map of France instead of Germany.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier received the gift— the German flag contained in an outline of France— from Romanian counterpart Bogdan Aurescu after a news conference on Monday to mark 135 years of diplomatic relations.

Aurescu personally apologized for the mix-up, as did the printing company.

On Wednesday, the foreign ministry said it had fired spokeswoman Brandusa Predescu saying "the incident...projected a totally unfavorable image" of the ministry.

Agerpres national news agency, which printed the brochure, said it was punishing an editor in charge of the project for the slip-up, docking her salary 10 percent for the next three months.

Romania said Steinmeier had responded diplomatically, saying he hadn't even noticed the gaffe.