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January 18, 2022

ForMin Melescanu, EU Affairs Minister Birchall, EU ambassadors discuss NATO, CVM report, relation with Russia

Minister of Foreign Affairs Teodor Melescanu and Minister delegate for European Affairs Ana Birchall attended on Monday a working lunch with the ambassadors of EU member states accredited to Bucharest, discussing among others the European Union’s security, NATO, the recent report on Romania’s progress under the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism, as well as relations with Russia and the Republic of Moldova.

The meeting was hosted by the Embassy of the Netherlands in Bucharest, on behalf of the Maltese Presidency of the Council of the EU.

The Maltese ambassador accredited to Romania, with the residence in La Valletta, also attended the meeting, the Foreign Ministry informed in a release to AGERPRES on Monday.

The first meeting of the Foreign Ministry’s top officials with the ambassadors of EU member states accredited to Bucharest after the installation of the new government was an occasion to exchange views on the latest developments and debate the current issues on the European and international agenda.

In his intervention, Minister Teodor Melescanu referred to aspects of the transatlantic relationship, security and the EU Global Strategy, the EU’s Neighborhood, the Republic of Moldova, Ukraine, the relations with the Russian Federation, developments in the Middle East.

The Foreign Minister underscored that Romania remains a “reliable ally of the US and an anchor of the transatlantic partnership.” In Romania’s view, “transatlantic connections are equally crucial for Europe and the United States.”

Melescanu highlighted Romania’s support for strengthening the role of the EU as regards security and defence, including by advancing the process of implementing the relevant documents adopted last year. He called for consistency and avoiding overlapping processes in the development of the EU role in security and defence and NATO’s role. The Foreign Minister also referred to the importance of the successful implementation of the EU Global Strategy for Foreign and Security Policy, emphasizing that the Romanian Foreign Ministry will contribute to the ongoing EU-wide reflection process on the subjects related to European security issues.

ForMin Melescanu presented Romania’s approaches in relation to the Eastern Neighborhood states and highlighted the increased interest of a strategic nature on this dimension.

Referring to the Republic of Moldova, Teodor Melescanu remarked the progress made so far and called on EU member states, through the attending ambassadors, to maintain their support for the reform process and the deepening of the EU – Moldova cooperation.

He emphasized the constant principles governing Romania’s relations with the Russian Federation, with reference to security developments in the eastern neighborhood and the Black Sea region, and in the light of the relevant decisions adopted by the EU and NATO.

Regarding regional issues, Melescanu showed that Romania’s priorities are maintaining stability and security, as well as having the states in the region anchored for good into European structures. He also highlighted the importance of cooperation formulas from the perspective of regional interconnectivity, especially in energy, transport and infrastructure.

The Foreign Minister also approached the latest developments in the Middle East, focusing on the situation in Syria and Iraq, and looked at their different implications, including as regards efforts to combat terrorism.

Minister delegate for European Affairs Ana Birchall approached a number of issues currently under debate in the EU and which are of particular relevance to Romania, namely the future of the Union, the implications of the Brexit process, the EU internal security with focus on the functioning of the Schengen Area, the management of migration, the post-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework.

In this context, the Minister delegate spoke about the government’s priorities in the line of European affairs, stressing the importance of achieving the goal of a successful Presidency of the Council of the EU in the first half of 2019 and outlining the main steps envisaged in the preparation process for the next period.

“The government has each time confirmed our pro-European attachment and our firm commitment to contributing to strengthening the European project, highlighting the importance we attach to unity, the inclusive dimension and cohesion, but also to fully respecting the principles and fundamental values of the EU. The European Union remains an indispensable project and the unprecedented challenges facing it require an increased capacity to obtain concrete results,” said Minister delegate for European Affairs Ana Birchall, as cited in the release.

As regards the management of migration, the official reiterated Romania’s position of supporting cooperation for a common response of the EU and strengthening dialogue with the countries of origin and transit for addressing the root causes of the phenomenon.

In this line, Birchall highlighted Romania’s substantial contribution to achieving these objectives, as a robust contributor to efforts to secure the European Union border, an aspect of relevance for its goal to join the Schengen Area.

The Minister delegate for European Affairs highlighted the importance of negotiations on the future Multiannual Financial Framework, including from the perspective of the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU, and emphasized the importance of this term for the accomplishment of the convergence and growth objectives as a basis for advancing EU policies overall.

As regards the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism, Minister Birchall presented “Romania’s substantial progress under the CVM, as reconfirmed by the European Commission’s report released on January 25, and reiterated the Romanian authorities’ openness to dialogue and cooperation for having the mechanism lifted, as well as the government’s firm commitment towards the rule of law and the fight against corruption,” the cited source said.

On this occasion, the Minister delegate informed the diplomats about the progress made in the preparations of Romania’s future term at the helm of the Council of the European Union in the first half of 2019.

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