DIPLOMACY JUSTICE POLITICS

US Embassy’s Rupp: Romania – example in region in terms of fight against corruption

Romania is “an example in the region in terms of the fight against corruption” and one of the goals of the partnership between Romania and the United States is to ensure that it will not allow public institutions “to withdraw from this progress,” said Abigail Rupp, deputy head of the US mission in Bucharest, at the Bucharest Law School, at the roundtable meeting “President Wilson’s Fourteen Points Speech and the Rise of Nation States in Central and Eastern Europe”.

She evoked the 20 years of strategic partnership between Romania and the US and said that in 1997, when this process started, “it had mainly a security dimension”.

Romania is the leader of our alliance in Afghanistan, one of the first countries to provide support to the US after the events of September 11 and joined the Afghanistan coalition. At one point, Romania had 2,000 troops there. Today, Romania has more than 600 troops in Afghanistan, making it the fourth most important contributor to NATO, the US official said in the context. She recalled that in Afghanistan more than 100 Romanian servicemen were injured and 26 died.

Rupp spoke about how the Romania-US partnership developed. We can see this partnership beyond the security dimension. We can look at the Romania-US relationship and the transition of Romania towards a free market in these over 20 years and its integration into the world economy, said the deputy head of the US mission.

She reminded that the US is the sixth most important foreign investor in Romania.

In the context, Rupp spoke about Romania as a regional example in the anti-corruption fight.

Certainly, over the past year, we have seen a growing refusal on the part of Romanian citizens against corruption and increasingly higher demands regarding the integrity of public authorities, the US official said.

In his turn, presidential adviser Bogdan Aurescu said that 2017 was “a very good year” for the Romania-US strategic partnership, describing the Washington meeting between Klaus Iohannis and Donald Trump as “substantial and very warm”.

Aurescu recalled the 1997 letter signed by Madeleine Albright, then Secretary of State, sent to the Foreign Ministry. The top US official then said that “the Romania-US partnership should be based on two factors: a common commitment to democratic values and institutions and the recognition of Romania’s pivotal position in South-East Europe.”

“I dare say that nothing has changed since then,” Bogdan Aurescu said.

The roundtable meeting “President Wilson’s Fourteen Points Speech and the Rise of Nation-States in Central and Eastern Europe” was the first debate dedicated to the Centenary of the Great Union of 1918 organized by the University of Bucharest. The event was hosted by the rector of the University of Bucharest, Mircea Dumitru, and brought together Romanian and foreign experts.

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