Minister of National Defence Mihai Fifor participated on Saturday in Arad in the Land Forces Day celebrations organized at the Memorial to the Unknown Soldier.
“It is a great joy for me to be here in Arad to celebrate – two days earlier, indeed – the Day of Romania’s Land Forces, but I was keen on coming here because there is a double significance attached to the battalion in Arad, as an elite unit of the Romanian Army and as here in Arad we have the Romanian-Hungarian Joint Peacekeeping Battalion,” Fifor said.
The DefMin spoke about military education, about the reopening of the Military Marine College in Constanta, as well as of the need to train an elite military corps.
”We have greatly increased the number of openings in university education because we want to expand the selection base for future physician officers. We are very preoccupied to form an elite military corps capable of dealing with any challenges the Romanian Army will be facing,” Fifor said.
The minister announced that the first 36 Piranha armored carriers will enter the Army’s fleet by the end of this year.
”The first carriers will arrive in the country by the end of this year. This is a batch of 31 armored carriers produced in Switzerland, plus another 5 which will be assembled in the country, at the Bucharest Mechanical Plant. After that, all the others up to 226 will also be produced at the Bucharest Mechanical Plant. The carriers will be distributed to all the units in the country,” Fifor explained, adding that the 191st Infantry Battalion in Arad is among the first units that will be equipped with this type of carrier.
The Archbishop of Arad Timotei Seviciu also attended the ceremony, evoking the Romanian Army’s battle tradition in defence of the homeland and the forerunners’ faith, and talking about the Holy Great Martyr George, the Victory-Bearer, who is the patron saint of the Land Forces.
Also present at the event held in Arad city’s ‘Avram Iancu’ Square were Arad Prefect Florentina Horgea, deputy Dorel Caprar, Chairman of the Defence Commission, Brig. Gen. Dr. Nicolae Tonu, deputy commander of the 4th Infantry Division “Gemina”, representatives of the Interior Ministry’s devolved local units, reserve or retired military personnel.
The servicemen of Romania’s Armed Forces celebrate the Land Forces Day, whose patron saint is the Holy Great Martyr George, the Victory-Bearer, every year on April 23.
All garrisons in the country and in the Afghanistan theatre of operations organize celebrations to honor the Land Forces Day, including exhibitions, symposia, movie screenings, displays of military technology and hardware, weapons handling drills, military wreath-laying ceremonies at monuments to heroes, military band concerts and performances of the ensembles of the military clubs, the Ministry of National Defence (MApN) informed in a press release.
Exhibition of military technology and hardware al Mall AFI Cotroceni, on Land Forces Day
The Land Forces Day was celebrated on Sunday at Mall AFI Cotroceni in Bucharest, the servicemen introducing to the public an exhibition of military hardware, weapons and equipment, stands for the promotion of the military profession.
“We celebrate the Day of Romania’s Land Forces, on 23 April, the Holy Great Martyr George’s day. We, servicemen of the land forces, come amidst the public so that they can see us the way we are, as we train every day in shooting ranges. Opening to the public is not a new thing. We have already been present in the Capital’s malls and in other cities in the country. We want to present to the audience what we do and assure them we are ready to defend our country when asked to,” Colonel Viorel Calenciuc with the Chief Staff of Land Forces, told AGERPRES on Sunday.
Calenciuc explained that the exhibition of military technique outside the mall features a Pirahna armored carriers, two mine resistant ambush protected vehicles and four-wheel drive command vehicle for the military Police endowed with radio stations used in telecommunications.
He specified that the Land Forces are currently present in theatres of operations abroad with over 600 servicemen, most in Kandahar, Afghanistan.
A brass band performance by the Military Band of the 1st Mechanised Brigade “Argedava” also took place in Mall AFI Cotroceni.