A NATO command structure will operate in the territory of Romania, President Traian Basescu announced after the alliance summit on Friday. “We will have a NATO command structure. In the documents that are not meant for the public, Romania features as a state that will offer facilities for a NATO command of acceptable dimensions,” Basescu explained. The president underlined that there will be no new military bases in Romania. “Romania has two Romanian-American military bases, one in Kogalnicean (Southeast) and one in Deveselu (Southwest). The rest of them are temporary garrisoning, exercises, field trainings, military maneuvers. The action plan enlarges the alternative and continuous military presence in Romania. On Romanian territory, we now have around 1,400 American troops, including 600 marines, elite soldiers. This effective will increase; it will be flexible, adapting to day-by-day situations. The important thing is that there’s a plan; the source of these troops and the fact that they can be deployed immediately and they are already equipped for any type of action are known,” he explained. Basescu added that Romania has the entire infrastructure ready to this effect.
“It is a direct offer made by President Obama at the Summit: the creation of a training centre and naval exercises in the Black Sea, to be held with the navies of Romania and Bulgaria. This centre will be continuously supplied with US Navy ships. Today, actually, a destroyer entered the port of Constanta (Southeastern Romania). The Black Sea is acknowledged in the Summit documents as especially important for the Euro-Atlantic security; this is the broadest statement on the Black Sea,” the president pointed out.
About the Romanian locations of NATO command elements, NATO Secretary General’s Assistant Sorin Ducaru said on Friday that these locations will be known at the right time, “when the concrete offer of Romania is announced”. As regards a NATO command center, Ducaru stressed there are “details” relating the military expertise and he underscored there are regional and sub-regional commands and Romania is part of this equation. Ducaru added any kind of activity will be coordinated from Romania, ranging from exercises to planning.
NATO messages – solidarity to members, freedom not for free
The NATO Summit foretold next missions after Afghanistan, and events over the past months created the conditions for the Alliance to act firstly as an organization fulfilling its fundamental mission of defending its members, according to the Romanian president.
“This Summit has demonstrated that there’s no head of state or government not understanding the fundamental mission of NATO that is defending its own members. I’d say that it’s a Summit of solidarity, one which revived the organization and sent a strong signal that upon any risk, no matter how small, for the members of the NATO alliance, the whole organization is ready to act on Article 5,” Basescu asserted.
According to him, NATO’s second message was that freedom does not come free of charge. Basescu also declared that Romania has reached all its goals at the NATO Summit in Wales. “We had a series of goals; all of them were met. It was a relatively lengthy inter-institutional work launched on the last year’s decision of CSAT (Supreme Council for Country’s Defence) urging the Alliance to set up contingency plans for Romania. I’d like to thank our ambassador to NATO, who was our contact person and negotiator within NATO institutions. The Summit has adopted 20 documents, of which 5 are public and 15 not public, but secret,” the president announced.
Also, the presidency and the Foreign Affairs Ministry published on Saturday evening the text of the NATO summit’s statement, in which there are presented the Alliance’s reaction plans, established as an aftermath of Russia’s aggressive actions against Ukraine.
According to Russian permanent envoy to NATO Alexander Grushko quoted by Interfax, NATO decisions concern changing military situation in security sector.
Also, some of the NATO summit’s conclusions foresee financial help for Ukraine and tougher economic sanctions for Russia.
Moreover, following the NATO summit in Wales, a plan to create a new rapid reaction force in Eastern Europe was announced, likely numbering at least 4,000, according to Reuters. The Baltic states and Romania have already offered to host the force.
Ponta: We have obtained something important, guarantee we will never be alone at NATO eastern border
By the decision made by NATO at its summit meeting in Wales that an alliance regional command be set up in our country, Romania has obtained the guarantee it will never be alone at the alliance eastern border, Prime Minister Victor Ponta said in this southeastern Romanian Black Sea port on Friday, after attending the opening of the Social Democrat Youth Summer School.
According to him, the next objective is that the Republic of Moldova, first and foremost, be as safe a country as Romania.
“This is a very good thing, it proves the fact we must work together in the future too when it comes to the interests of Romania. Now, the next objective…, Romania is a safe country, we must try to help Moldova, first and foremost, to be as safe as we are and then (help) Ukraine, Georgia and our other partners,” the prime minister underscored.
Ponta added each NATO member will have its own tasks.
ForMin Corlatean: Romania stays clearly committed to supporting NATO continued enlargement process
Foreign Affairs Minister Titus Corlatean said on Friday Romania stays “clearly committed” to supporting the continued NATO enlargement process.
Corlatean told Agerpres that as part of the NATO summit he participated in a meeting of the Alliance foreign ministers also attended by the foreign ministers of NATO candidate or aspiring states – Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Georgia. “It was an extremely useful debate and I am glad to find out that the allied states and Romania, at any rate, remain clearly committed to supporting the continued NATO enlargement process,” he underscored.
The Romanian minister stressed that the open doors policy as regards the Alliance membership remains “an essential goal” of Romania and one that Bucharest has constantly promoted.
Corlatean said he had addressed all three meetings, he had spoken of the neighboring Republic of Moldova, of its European integration aspirations and the security risks it is facing at present. “I once again highlighted the strategic relevance of the Black Sea and hence the need to adopt important military strategic measures within the Alliance with respect to the Black Sea,” the Romanian top diplomat said.