At the request of the Commandant of the US Army War College, Major General John S. Kem, on 20 April 2018, the Permanent Representative of Romania to the United Nations, Ambassador Ion Jinga, received the visit of the USAWC class of 2018, which includes a Romanian officer, Colonel Cristinel Apopei. The visit is part of the annual calendar of study trips that the students of the prestigious US military institution are conducting in New York and includes the Permanent Missions of the UN member states which have representatives enrolled in the International Fellows Program offered by the USAWC. The Mission of Romania hosted this event every year, over the last decade, without interruption.
The Permanent Representative of Romania highlighted the continuity and importance of organizing these meetings with the future generation of military leaders, thanking the officers for their interest in Romania and our country’s concerns as a UN member state and with 27 years of experience in participating in the missions of peacekeeping under the aegis of the Organization.
Pointing out the main milestones of Romania’s candidacy for a non-permanent membership in the Security Council in 2020-2021 – starting with the 100-year tradition of multilateral diplomacy (Romania being a founding member of the League of Nations), continuing with the anchoring of Romanian foreign policy, international law and the UN Charter, membership of the EU and NATO, the credibility of the international engagements that Romania assumes, including in the Security Council campaign, this year holding the chairmanship of the UN Peacebuilding Commission (one of the most important UN bodies for promoting the new concept of sustainable peace), active participation in regional and subregional cooperation formats, the presidency of the Council of the EU (January-July 2019) and ending with uninterrupted participation since 1991 with more than 12,500 soldiers, policemen and close protection staff to no less than 20 UN missions – Ambassador Ion Jinga has emphasized that Romania, as a member of the only international global organization, aims to remain a promoter of international peace and security and an active presence in preventive diplomacy, peacebuilding and conflict mediation, both at level of debate within the UN and in the field of the missions:
“Currently, Romania participates with military force, police and personnel for protection and guarding in two-thirds of the current peacekeeping operations and two special UN special missions, including the Central African Republic, DR Congo, Mali, Sudan and South Sudan, Libya and Afghanistan, missions with the highest risk. On this date, Romania ranks first among the EU member states contributing with police officers under the UN flag and the only country that provides close protection teams in high-risk areas for the protection of senior UN dignitaries. ”
The visit of the USAWC class of 2018 also provided a good opportunity to highlight the consistency of the strategic partnership between Romania and the US, reaffirming our country’s commitment to allocate 2% of GDP for defense, to strengthen the allied posture of deterrence and to support the military effort under the Alliance, in line with the commitments made within NATO.
At the end of the meeting, Colonel Cristinel Apopei, the Romanian student attending the USAWC, offered the Romanian Ambassador to the UN, on behalf of all the students, the USAWC Emblem.
The US Army War College, one of the reference institutions for developing the skills needed by future military leaders, offers annual scholarships in the International Fellows Program for about 80 senior officers from different countries, selected on the basis of professional qualities, experience gained in multinational structures and career development potential. Every year, as part of the USAWC’s academic program, a study trip to relevant civilian, military, cultural, and educational institutions is organized in the United States.