Foreign Affairs Minister Bogdan Aurescu had a telephone conversation on Thursday with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, having an opinion exchange on priority topics on the NATO agenda, in the perspective of the NATO foreign ministers’ meeting, in the beginning of December.
According to a Foreign Affairs Ministry (MAE) release sent to AGERPRES, some of the topics tackled were NATO’s adaptation process to the current security challenges, the consolidation of the defence and deterrence posture on the eastern flank, the promotion of dialogue and cooperation with the partners in the eastern neighbourhood, the ongoing operational commitments, as well as measures to increase allied resilience.
The Secretary General thanked Romania for its active commitment and the consistent contributions within NATO, including by earmarking 2pct of the GDP to Defence, the consistent participation in ongoing missions and operations and hosting the missile defence system at the Military Base in Deveselu. At the same time, he voiced appreciation for Romania hosting, together with NATO, the Annual NATO Conference on Weapons of Mass Destruction, Arms Control, Disarmament and Non-Proliferation on 10 November 2020.
Minister Aurescu reiterated Romania’s firm commitment to the Alliance, the determination to contribute to achieving its goals and continuing NATO’s adaptation to the new realities.
Aurescu brought to mind that 2021 would mark 10 years since the signing of the agreement between Romania and the US that created the legal ground for deploying the system at Deveselu – the Agreement between Romania and USA on the deployment to Romania of the US missile defence system, the Romanian chief diplomat thus proposing the Secretary General to celebrate this important moment for Romania, the US and NATO.
The Romanian Foreign Minister underscored, in context, the vital importance of the transatlantic relation, voicing his conviction that the ongoing process for the consolidation of the political dimension of the Alliance, “NATO 2030”, would contribute to increasing cohesion among the allies and the efficiency of the joint actions.
Aurescu reiterated the support for the Secretary General’s efforts in this respect, as well as Romania’s interest in continuing to get actively involved in this process. He evoked, in context, Romania’s support to consolidating EU’s role in the security and defence area, in full complementarity with NATO and without the inefficient role doubling, appreciating that the COVID-19 pandemic had put forth the importance of EU’s strategic resilience consolidation.
Tackling the complexity of the current security environment and the enhanced dynamics of the developments on a regional and international level, Aurescu underlined the need to keep NATO’s attention on the security situation in the Black Sea region, which is marked by several tensions and intensification of military activities.
Under this circumstances, he said it was necessary to continue ensuring a consolidated allied posture in the region. He also hailed the upcoming consistent debate during the NATO ministerial meeting in the beginning of December on the security in the Black Sea region, with the participation of the foreign ministers of Ukraine and Georgia. In this respect, he mentioned the importance of NATO continuing engaging the partners in the region, by deepening political dialogue and increasing practical cooperation, for the consolidation of their defence capacities and resilience.
In respect to NATO’s operational commitments, the Romanian minister confirmed Romania’s commitment to continue to actively contribute to the allied operations. He also highlighted the importance of keeping a close coordination among the allies in respect to the military presence in various theatres, mainly in Afghanistan, the decisions referring to it going to be adopted, same as so far, based on the developments on the field, as well as taking into account the responsibility of ensuring stability and security in this country and region.
The head of the Romanian diplomacy underscored, during the conversation, that ensuring resilience would remain a priority, on a national level and in an allied framework, and the close cooperation among member states, based on the lessons learnt so far, would stay essential for increasing the efficiency of the individual and collectives responses to such crises.