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June 29, 2022
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President Iohannis visits mobile camp for refugees in Siret: No Ukrainian man, no Ukrainian woman will be denied entrance in Romania. We will take all steps to relieve the suffering of refugees

President Klaus Iohannis said on Saturday, after visiting the mobile camp for refugees in Siret County, in Suceava County, that no Ukrainian, man or woman, will be refused entry into Romania, stressing that the Romanian authorities will take all steps to relieve the suffering of refugees and those who remain in Ukraine in complicated situations.

“Allow me to tell you that this situation, this unprovoked, unjustified war, started by Russia against Ukraine, has generated a humanitarian catastrophe, a humanitarian catastrophe that has caused hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians to abandon their homes, to take refuge and many of them reach us in Romania where they are well received. I could say where they are very well received. Just now I greeted a group of volunteers who I believe is representative of the way Romanians have reacted to this large number of refugees. They immediately went to customs, welcomed them, waited for them with clothes, food and continued these actions,” Iohannis said.

“I thank all the Romanians and humanitarian organizations, who from the first hour were present in the customs and received, as appropriate, the refugees from Ukraine. But, it is worth it, in my opinion, pointed out that the authorities have also done their duty, starting from the forces of the Ministry of Interior, to the County Councils, to the City Halls, which, all of them, got involved and organized their work, brought forces from elsewhere and in record time realized these camps, the flows from the customs. They deserve all the appreciation. People who are taking refuge from the face of war are in desperate situations. Many of them have come without anything and we offer everything that can be offered to people who are in this situation. If necessary, they receive food, they receive clothing, they receive transport from the customs to the camp, here they are drawn up, to those who do not yet have, the appropriate documents,” said President Iohannis.

“It is a situation that no Ukrainian and no Romanian wanted, but we are very determined to face this situation here in Romania. I want to be clear from the beginning: no Ukrainian man, no Ukrainian woman will be refused when entering Romania, what’s more, we are also in discussions with the neighbors from the Republic of Moldova to help them as well. There is also a very large number of refugees there,” the president said.

“This situation, the way we’ve assessed it, will continue quite a lot, and the complications will get worse. We believe that this humanitarian catastrophe will spread. A lot of aid will be needed here, too, but also in Ukraine. In order to support those who remain in Ukraine, we have decided to arrange here, in Suceava County, near the airport, a logistics center for humanitarian aid, a European logistics center. This logistics center, or hub as it is called today, will operate under the umbrella of the European Civil Protection rescEU, will collect humanitarian aid from all over Europe, from all interested international organizations and will take this aid to Ukraine and if necessary it will take it to the Republic of Moldova.I was with the president of the County Council today and I saw the location where this logistics center will be organized. We will start the first phase in a very short time and along the way it will expand as much as it will be needed. Together with the Government, we are working to solve absolutely all the situations that arise and as much as it will be needed, as much as we will do, in order to relieve from the suffering of the refugees and of those who remain in Ukraine in complicated situations”, Klaus Iohannis said.

 

Romania is ready for Ukrainian refugees on medium and long term

 

The head of state also said on Saturday that Romania is ready for Ukrainian refugees on medium and long terms, to take them from the border, but cannot intervene on Ukrainian territory to provide help.

“We start from the scenario in which this conflict will not expand, NATO will not be involved in this military conflict and Romania will not be involved in this conflict either. Our role that we see is the one we have described, to help those who take refuge, we will also help those who remain in Ukraine. And with Moldova, we are in a very close relationship and we are determined that, in the situation where humanitarian aid is needed, we will intervene there as well. We do not have data now to show a scenario that Moldova would be threatened. (…) You realize that, administratively, we can’t intervene in Ukraine, we take over the people who come to us and take care of them. But keep in mind that there was communication and there were situations where people who needed urgent intervention were helped to get around faster. But the formalities of leaving Ukraine are formalities that the authorities in Ukraine are dealing with,” Iohannis said on Saturday at the mobile camp for refugees from northeastern Siret.

The president said that the authorities will prepare schools and kindergartens for refugees.

“We have short-term plans, such as this center (the logistics one for humanitarian aid, ed. n.), but we also have medium and long-term plans. We are preparing, for example, with schools and kindergartens and we already have in our kindergartens children brought from Ukraine by their parents, who are very well cared for. For this I want to thank the community here, the mayor of Siret for the organization, as well as the County Council, which was, in turn, very involved. We prepare schools for children, we prepare accommodation for refugees, which we will even help and find jobs in Romania in case they have to stay here for longer. We are therefore ready and will continue to be prepared on all levels and for as long as necessary,” Iohannis added.

 

NATO forces are likely to come closer to the Eastern flank

 

President Klaus Iohannis also said on Saturday that given that Russia is an aggressor, NATO must do whatever it takes to protect its member states and provide a defence for them, noting that it is “quite likely” that NATO forces will come closer to the Eastern Flank.

“There are two things. At this point, we have no indications that a different scenario is necessary than the one we are living in, unfortunately, now. So, we don’t think the conflict is going to expand. On the other hand, it is very clear that here we have an aggressor, which is Russia, and we must do whatever it takes to protect ourselves and provide a defence for our states. And in this regard, yes, it is desirable and it is quite likely that forces from NATO will come closer to the Eastern Flank,” President Iohannis said.

The head of state announced that on Sunday he will go to the southeastern Mihail Kogalniceanu military Base near Constanta, “where an important contingent from France, from Belgium arrived, there are soldiers from the United States, we know, from Italy and from Germany”.

“I will greet them, I will say ‘welcome’. But there are plans for additional forces to come. Once again, we are preparing to defend ourselves, we do not intend to go somewhere else,” Iohannis added.

He stressed that NATO cannot engage militarily in a conflict in a state that is not a member of the Alliance.

“It is very sad that we have a war in Europe, but for many well-known reasons, NATO cannot get involved militarily in a conflict in a state that is not a member of NATO. And we, however, feel responsible and do everything we can, which is seen here – we intervene with humanitarian aid, we help refugees, both in the short term and in the medium term, and we will continue to do so for those who remain in Ukraine. That is why we are setting up a European logistics center for humanitarian support,” Iohannis said.

 

Compiled from Agerpres

Photo: www.presidency.ro

 

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