American think tank Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS) of Washington, D.C. has organized on Wednesday a conference to mark the anniversary of one year since the inauguration of the Aegis Ashore missile defence system at the Deveselu Military Base in Romania, as well as on the topic of Romania’s contribution to ballistic missile defence in Europe and the perspectives of developing the NATO capabilities to defend against ballistic missiles, the Romanian Embassy in the US capital informs.
Romanian Ambassador in Washington, George Cristian Maior (photo), had the main speech of the event that saw, also, as guests Frank Rose, Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control, Verification, and Compliance from 2014 to 2017, Major General Harold “Punch” Moulton, former Director of Operations, U.S. European Command, as well as other specialists in the domain.
The Romanian diplomat evidenced our country’s contribution, together with the USA’s, in the realm of defence against ballistic missiles and the strategic value of the Aegis Ashore system for the North-Atlantic Alliance: “Aegis Ashore is defining to the exceptional quality of the Strategic Partnership between the USA and Romania, now at its 20th anniversary”.
At the same time, Ambassador Maior has showed that Aegis Ashore has brought a significant contribution to extending the coverage and protection range against potential ballistic missile attacks coming from outside the Euro-Atlantic space, the transfer of this facility to NATO constituting an important element for declaring the initial operational capacity of the NATO BMD at the Allied Summit in Warsaw of July 2016.
George Maior declared that the “investment in anti-missile defence is one of long-term for the high threat of ballistic technology”, including through the point of view of the interests of the state and non-state to hold and develop such technologies.
Furthermore, he emphasized the purely defensive character of the anti-missile facility in Deveselu and the NATO BMD capability. pointing out that they are not targeted against Russia, they do not infringe the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) and does not undermine the capacity for strategic discouragement of Russia.
Ambassador Maior showed that the “NATO anti-missile defence represents a model of common Allied contribution on the basis of the key principles of solidarity and indivisibility of Allied security. Aegis Ashore Romania contributes to collective defence within NATO, for an efficient and credible discouragement and for the consolidation of the transatlantic relationship”.
Frank Rose, Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control, Verification, and Compliance from 2014 to 2017, emphasized that Romania is the most trustworthy ally of the United States and thanked our country for the leadership assumed within NATO, emphasizing, beside the important contribution for the NATO anti-missile defence capability, Romania’s robust commitment in Afghanistan.
Major General (r) Harold “Punch” Moulton, former Director of Operations, U.S. European Command, remarked that the Aegis Ashore operationalized in Romania constitutes the foundation for future ballistic missile defence, according to a release of the Romanian Embassy in Washington.