DIPLOMACY

Foreign Minister Comanescu: Visa topic, constantly on Romanian-US discussion agenda

Foreign Affairs Minister Lazar Comanescu said on Tuesday that the removal of the visa requirement for Romanian citizens traveling to the United States of America represents a topic which has constantly been on the discussion agenda of meetings between Romanian and US officials.

“This topic has been and is constantly on the agenda in our discussions with the US side. At the same time, we must take into account the realities in the US political life. It is a demarche we continue and we hope to make progress in this respect,” Comanescu told TVR public television.

He said that the strategic partnership between Romania and the US is registering an excellent evolution, pointing out that this development concerns not only defence, but other sectors as well.
“We note that over the past year the Romanian-US political dialogue, but not only, has strengthened. (…) This is also a clear indicator of the manner in which the Romanian-US strategic partnership evolves,” the Romanian top diplomat also said.


On relation with Russia: We must be pragmatic, there are points on which we can continue dialogue

Foreign Affairs Minister Lazar Comanescu said that Romania must be pragmatic in the relation with the Russian Federation, showing that, beyond the problems related to Russia’s intervention in the east of Ukraine, there are “specific matters” on which Bucharest and Moscow can continue dialogue.

“The relation with Russia is one which I would say it is quasi-similar with the relation which other European Union or NATO member states have with the Russian Federation. We must be pragmatic. Beyond what I was mentioning, there obviously are specific matters on which we can continue dialogue. I am referring, for instance, to the economic matters,” Comanescu told TVR public television broadcaster.

He mentioned that Romania must continue the collaboration with Russia also within the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization.

As far as the other aspects are concerned, related to the manner in which Russia gets involved in the east of Ukraine and the situation in Crimea, the Romanian top diplomat underscored the need for Moscow to observe the commitments assumed under the Minsk agreements and the international law principles.


In Bodnariu case: We know that a certain discretion is required

Foreign Minister Lazar Comanescu said that although there may be “improvable areas” in the Norwegian child welfare law, in the Bodnariu case the current regulations must be taken into account; Comanescu also advised discretion, given the “sensitivity” of the case.

“The Romanian and the Norwegian Foreign Ministries are working together and having a constant dialogue. We have all the guarantees from our Norwegian interlocutors that the relevant regulations are being duly observed. Of course, we can discuss on this – and our Norwegian partners agree – that there may be improvable areas in the Norwegian relevant regulations, but this is a process that requires time and we must take into account the current regulations,” Comanescu told the national public broadcaster TVR.

He said that the best interest of the Bodnariu children has been taken into consideration in all the efforts made by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“It’s a somewhat sensitive subject and from experience – not just ours, but also that of other countries that have faced or are facing similar situations – we know that (…) a certain (…) discretion (…) is required. Let things unfold unaffected by possible statements or positions which could lead to different interpretations, as it happened in the case of other countries,” added the Romanian chief diplomat.

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