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September 19, 2019
DIPLOMACY POLITICS

ForMin Melescanu: I personally do not support the declassification of the memo on relocation of the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, but it will be the Government’s decision

Foreign Minister Teodor Melescanu stated on Thursday, after talks with PSD leader Liviu Dragnea, that he does not support the declassification of the memorandum on the relocation of the Romanian embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, but the decision belongs to the Prime Minister.

“It was an idea. I, personally, do not support the initiative [to declassify the memorandum – editor’s note], but, of course, it’s a decision that the Government, the Prime Minister, will take,” Melescanu said when asked whether the declassification of the memorandum has been discussed within the Government.

He added that he presented to Liviu Dragnea the stage of the relocation process and that talks are taking place with all ministries to see the advantages and disadvantages of this move.

“I presented to him the stage in which we are and the fact that we are now focusing on the economic issues, with all ministries – from Economy to Agriculture, to see what the advantages and disadvantages are,” he explained.

Likewise, the Foreign Minister said that he has asked all ministries for their positions on the relocation of the embassy, so analyses on this topic are being carried out.

“We asked all of them primarily for written positions on this topic, all ministries. We approached the security issues, now within the MAE we are working on the juridical issues entailed by such a decision, and we have asked the economic ministries for an assessment on their part too, after which we will meet, and we will draft the material,” Teodor Melescanu added.

He stated that he also invited the Presidential Administration at the talks, the Presidency refusing by saying that it will express its point of view after the Government’s analysis is finalised.

“We have invited the Presidential Administration to participate in our meetings with the ministries, but the answer was that they would present a point of view after the said analysis is carried out. After the assessment is over, we will send it to the Romanian President, Parliament and Prime Minister, in order to be able to adopt a joint decision,” Melescanu concluded.

The memorandum on the relocation of the Romanian embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, adopted by the Government in April, could become public, a proposal in this sense being discussed within PSD’s National Standing Bureau.

“Indeed, we discussed [it], within the National Standing Bureau. President Dragnea raised this issue for us to study. And, if it’s doable, I believe it would be good for the whole nation to know what we are discussing within the Government, because there’s no problem, we have no secrets. We’re talking about Romania, not about persons or political groups,” Deputy Premier Paul Stanescu told Digi24.

Asked whether this could be done during the Government meeting on Thursday, Stanescu said: “It’s possible, I don’t know what to tell you. The decision will be taken within the Government. It’s a Government issue, the Government will decide this, it was a proposal.”

Two weeks ago, Foreign Minister Teodor Melescanu stated before the House Foreign Affairs Committee that he takes responsibility for the memorandum on the relocation of the embassy to Jerusalem, that it is a Foreign Ministry initiative and not a classified document, but that the document contains non-public information and that is why it is “confidential.”

He said that it concerns the Government’s approval of only an analysis involving all Romanian embassies, especially those in the Middle East and the Arab world.

 

Orban: By demanding the declassification of memo on relocation of the embassy in Israel, Dragnea admits that it was classified and that he presented its contents on television, accuses himself or admits he committed an offence

 

National Liberal Party (PNL) President Ludovic Orban has claimed that PSD leader Liviu Dragnea’s request for the declassification of the memorandum on the relocation of the Romanian embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem shows that he “incriminates himself,” because by doing so he admits that the document was classified and he presented its contents on television.

“The fact that Liviu Dragnea is demanding the declassification shows to me that he is, in fact, incriminating himself. By demanding the declassification, he admits it was classified, and if the memorandum was classified and he presented its contents on television, as an adopted decision, it means he accuses himself or he admits he committed a crime by divulging classified information not meant to be public. I find no other significance in Dragnea’s request,” Ludovic Orban said.

Referring to the criminal complaint he filed against the Premier, Orban said that there are a lot of questions regarding this embassy relocation overture, claiming he has seen several revelations according to which there are allegedly two memorandums.

“What I want is for these things to be investigated, because there are extremely numerous questions marks that appeared immediately after the memorandum, and that continue to appear. I’ve seen revelations in various publications, which show that Dragnea had a meeting prior to the adoption of the memorandum. Likewise, there are voices that claim that there were two memorandums. Let us recall: the PSD President clearly said during the talk-show that ‘the Government has decided,’ and the Foreign Ministry’s initial position was to somehow distance itself from such an idea. Of course, after that he changed his story, but this must be investigated,” the PNL leader added.

 

Iohannis says it is initiators’ business to clarify declassification of memorandum on embassy relocation

 

President Klaus Iohannis said on Thursday he was letting the initiators of the government memorandum on the relocation of the Romanian Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem to clarify the request for declassification of the document.

“It is the business of the initiators whether or not to clarify an approach,” said the president in Arges County asked about the public discussion, including at a government meeting, on the declassification of the memorandum regarding the relocation of the Romania’s Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Asked how things went, as the Romanian Foreign Ministry (MAE) is conducting an analysis of the impact of the embassy’s move and that MAE asked him for his opinion, Iohannis said: “At some point I will tell you in great detail how things went, but not today.”

 

 

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