DEFENCE DIPLOMACY

President Iohannis: Romania to plead at NATO Summit for more attention to Black Sea

Romania will plead at the NATO Summit in Warsaw for more attention to the Black Sea, President Klaus Iohannis told the opening conference of the ‘Security in the Black Sea Region: Shared Challenges, Sustainable Future’ programme on Tuesday.

He stressed the special significance of the Black Sea region as a NATO and EU border and as a trade, culture and security node between Europe, Central Asia and the Middle East.

“This space thus has a special dynamic, also generated by the different interest of the riparian states in politics, military, economy and energy. The presence of frozen or even active conflicts, the democratic deficits, the high level of cross-border crime and the various types of pressure make this area a problem one, with risks, but also crucial for the security of our continent and even of the whole Euro-Atlantic space,” he declared.

The present challenges, with complex threats that could not be anticipated a couple of years ago, make the security environment unpredictable. “On the east, we are dealing with a more active Russian Federation, more aggressive with its neighbours, infringing the international laws and – through its actions of militarisation of the Black Sea space, including the illegally occupied Crimea, seriously affected the security balance at the Black sea. Meanwhile, on south, we are witnessing an unstable security environment characterised by violence, international terrorism that affects the European continent, and illegal migration. (…) We are also facing threats to the energy security and cyber attacks,” Iohannis detailed.

He called for integrated solutions including security and humanitarian elements to address the insecurity hot spots, not just their consequences.

 

President Iohannis criticizes recent statements of Russia

 

President Klaus Iohannis says that some recent statements of Russia are incorrect; he stressed again that the missile defence system in Deveselu has nothing to do with Russia.

“The recent statements on the Russian Federation’s behalf in connection with the missile defence system are incorrect, as the system has absolutely nothing to do with Russia. They cannot intimidate us. On the contrary, these groundless statements reconfirm the fact that our approach of strengthening NATO’s security as a legitimate reaction to the Russian attitude in the Black Sea region is correct,” Iohannis declared in the opening of the ‘Security in the Black Sea Region: Shared Challenges, Sustainable Future’ Programme on Tuesday.

Russian President Vladimir Putin had warned Romania and Poland last Friday that they might be within the Russian missiles’ range since they host elements of the American missile shield perceived by Moscow as a threat.

“If yesterday in those areas of Romania people simply did not know what it means to be in the cross-hairs, then today we will be forced to carry out certain measures to ensure our security,” Reuters quoted Putin. “‘It will be the same case with Poland,” he added in a joint news conference in Athens with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.

Poland shares the same situation, added the Russian president.

Putin did not specify what concrete measures Moscow was going to take and stressed that it won’t take the first step, but only respond to Washington’s actions. “‘We won’t take any action until we see rockets in areas that neighbour us,” he concluded.

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