The event was attended by President Traian Basescu, Prime Minister Victor Ponta,
the speakers of the two Parliamentary Chambers, and Nicolae Timofti, President of the Republic of Moldavia, Prince Nicholas, as well as ministers and party leaders.
Around 20,000 persons took part in the one-hour-long December 1 Parade organized in the Arch of Triumph Square, Bucharest, to celebrate 95 years since the Great Unification, according to data provided by the Gendarmerie and cited by realitatea.net. The festivities held on the occasion of Romania’s National Day started at 11.00 a.m. with the Military Flag salute and the presentation of the Honor Guard, followed by a performance of the National Anthem of Romania by the ‘Divine Harmony’ Academic Choir, accompanied by the Representative Orchestra of the National Defence Ministry and the Military Music Band of the 30th Honor Guard Regiment ‘Mihai Viteazul’. 21 cannon shots were fired by the artillery battery of the 30th Honor Guard Regiment ‘Mihai Viteazul’ and flower crowns were placed on behalf of the Presidency, Senate, Chamber of Deputies, and the Government.
Over 2,000 servicemen from MoD, the Ministry of Administration and Internal Affairs (MAI), the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI), and the Protection and Guard Service (SPP), and for the first time, 140 foreign servicemen from France, Poland, Turkey, and the U.S. paraded through the square. People complained Gendarmerie officers performed more rigorous searches for this reason, prohibiting members of the public to bring water bottles in the perimeter of the parade. The central attraction point of the entire event occurred when 200 military machines passed by under the Arch of Triumph and 35 airplanes flew over the square.
This year too, district mayors of the capital city followed the already known ‘recipe’ of free food and drink to the letter, a recipe designed for those willing to make their way through an enormous crowd and earn a meat cabbage roll or bean casserole and a glass of boiled ‘tuica’ or mulled wine.
National Day festivities were hosted in most areas of the country. Over 10,000 persons attended the event in Cluj and Timisoara, while in Vaslui, over 6,000 persons took part in the largest December 1 Parade of the last 25 years, organized Sunday by Vaslui Town Hall and the County Military Center.
Open Doors Day at Parliament and Government headquarters
Around 2,500 persons visited the Parliament Palace in the first two hours of the Open Doors Day, according to the organizers. The halls visited by members of the public included the Plenum Hall and Valeriu Zgonea, the Chamber of Deputies Chairman’s office. Visitors were greeted by Prime Minister Victor Ponta himself on the Doors Open Day at government headquarters. The PM took part in the unveiling of the National Flag placed on the frontispiece of the Victoria Palace and proceeded to personally say hello to the visitors.
Chisinau Mayor Chirtoaca in Alba Iulia
Dorin Chirtoaca, Mayor of Chisinau, stated during Sunday’s National Day festivities in Alba Iulia that “reunifying our people” is “the objective for the 21st century,” emphasizing that inhabitants beyond the Prut river are also Romanian. The Mayor of Chisinau was the only public figure to hold a speech at the ceremonies organized in Union Hall to honor the receipt of messengers from the Seat Unification Fortresses in Alba Iulia. The mayor added he wishes “Happy Anniversary!” from Chisinau to all Romanians who have come to Alba Iulia to celebrate Romania’s National Day.
Royal train Sinaia-Bucharest, a symbolic trip on December 1
Hundreds of people came Sunday, starting 3.00 PM, at the Gara de Nord station to witness the arrival of the royal train. Princess Margareta and her husband, Prince Radu, along with Prince Nicolae, Princess Elena, and Transportation Minister Ramona Manescu disembarked from the train and stood motionless for several minutes, while the fanfare ‘Muzica Reprezentativa a Armatei’ played the anthems of Romania and of the Royal House. The first trip of the royal train took place 95 years ago, from Iasi to Bucharest, according to people present at the event.
Speeches in favour of unity and continuity
The government will do its job, undisturbed by scandals and useless internal conflicts, regardless of the various provocations that may appear, righting many wrongs committed during the past years, PREMIER VICTOR PONTA said in a December 1 message in which he also pleads for unity and solidarity. He affirms that there are plenty of reasons for Romanians to be proud with their present, the place they have today, and should also be proud with all those who took Romania’s flag across the world. Ponta also mentioned that Romanians must be proud because their road in Europe and at international scale becomes ever stronger each year.
SENATE SPEAKER CRIN ANTONESCU said in his address on the occasion of the National Day that one should not forget that “a united nation is the foundation of a strong state and without the active involvement of citizens in the society.”
“Without determination we cannot have a strong Romania, a dignified and prosperous country,” reads the message sent by the speaker of the Senate.
THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF MOLDOVA, NICOLAE TIMOFTI, said in the address delivered during a reception at the Cotroceni Palace that the Triumph Arch parade made him feel the mental and military force of Romania, as part of the united Europe. “We hope that we will soon become part of the European space, so we can enjoy and share the same rights in terms of democracy, economy and free movement,” the Moldovan president stated.
THE SECRETARY OF STATE OF THE UNITED STATES, JOHN KERRY, conveyed congratulations to the Romanian people, on behalf of President Barack Obama and of the American people, on the occasion of the National Day of Romania, reads a communique posted on the site of the US State Department, quoted by Mediafax.
Reception at Cotroceni, Ponta and Antonescu absent
President Basescu on Sunday evening hosted a reception at the Cotroceni Palace, on the occasion of the National Day of Romania, attended by more than 1,000 guests, officials, representatives of the Army, cults, the Diplomatic Corps and the media. The big absentees of the event were Premier Ponta and the speakers of the two Houses of the Parliament, Crin Antonescu and Valeriu Zgonea. Also absent were other ministers and leaders of USL.