Thousands of people attended a military parade in Alba Iulia on Thursday, December 1, Romania’s National Day, where more than 1,000 soldiers, gendarmes, firefighters, police officers, students and military students took part, alongside French soldiers of the NATO battlegroup deployed at Cincu, Brasov County.
Also in attendance were Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca, Defence Minister Angel Tilvar, MEPs Victor Negrescu and Mircea Hava, as well as Dan Barna of the Save Romania Union (USR), George Simion of the Alliance for the Union of Romanians (AUR), and Ludovic Orban of the Right Force.
IAR 330 SOCAT helicopters of the 71st General Emanoil Ionescu Air Base were flown as part of the parade.
For the first time in the Alba Iulia December 1 parade, reenactors of the National Museum of the Alba Iulia Union, led by Deputy Director Tudor Rosu, joined in with the “Alba Iulia National Guard,” a reenactment of the military formation that contributed to the safe conduct of the National Assembly on December 1, 1918 in the city. Also, for the second consecutive year in Alba Iulia, the Pandurii Vladimirescului, a detachment made up of history enthusiasts, as well as Detasamentul lui Mateias, reenacted a contingent of Romanian infantrymen of the 70th Infantry Regiment who fought in WWI.
At the Alba Iulia parade, the most modern artillery systems, the M 142 HIMARS multiple launch rocket system, as well as GEPARD anti-aircraft equipment and Piranha III and Piranha V armoured wheel vehicles were showcased.
The parade was opened by Brigadier General Bogdan Cernat, commander of the 4th Gemina Infantry Division.
The foot marching detachments were made up of soldiers belonging to the 4th Gemina Infantry Division; the 54th Horea, Closca and Crisan Support Battalion of the Special Operations Forces of Targu Mures; the 81st Grigore Balan Mechanised Brigade; the 812th Bistrita – Carpathian Hawks Infantry Battalion; the 61st General Virgil Badulescu Mountain Brigade of Miercurea Ciuc; the 17th Dragos Voda Mountain Battalion; the 26th Avram Iancu Mountain Reconnaissance and Surveillance Battalion; the 18th Decebal Reconnaissance and Surveillance Brigade; the 136th Apulum Combat Engineer Battalion, and the 10th Lower Danube Brigade.
For the first time, a detachment of French soldiers who are part of the NATO battlegroup in Romania, stationed at Cincu and operating under the command of the Headquarters Multinational Division South-East, paraded in Alba Iulia. The platoon, made up of 22 artillerymen, is part of the fire support company of the 1st Artillery Regiment of Belfort.
The Ministry of National Defence was represented in Alba Iulia by students of the Nicolae Balcescu Land Forces Academy in Sibiu and students of the Mihai Viteazul National Military College of Alba Iulia.
On behalf of the Ministry of the Interior, the parade was opened by the Dr Aurel Greblea Sibiu Canine Centre, which presented 9 canine teams. Following behind were the Romanian Gendarmerie group consisting of soldiers of the King Ferdinand I Mobile Gendarmerie Group of Targu Mures and the Unirea General Emergency Management Inspectorate of Alba Iulia.
The National Administration of Penitentiaries was represented by a detachment of penitentiary police officers from the Aiud Penitentiary.
Bringing up the rear was a detachment of the Romanian Red Cross, Alba branch.
The Romania National Day parade at the Greater Union Citadel was concluded by a guard of honour made up of soldiers of the 811th Transylvanian Dragons Infantry Battalion and the Military Music of the 4th Gemina Infantry Division,
The largest military parade ever organised in Alba Iulia took place in 2018, on the Union Centennial, when more than 1,600 soldiers paraded, as well as around 150 pieces of defence equipment.
PM Ciuca: We still need unity, solidarity, empathy
Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca said on Thursday, December 1, Romania’s National Day, in Alba Iulia that there is still need for unity, solidarity, and empathy.
“It is a very important day for us and, as every time we have shown respect and honour for the memory of those who sacrificed themselves in the most difficult moments for Romania to be as it is today, I believe that from now on, in moments perhaps not as difficult as back then, we still need unity, solidarity, and empathy. I am convinced that, as we have done every time, we will do it from now on, being able to demonstrate that Romania is a truly European country,” said Ciuca.
He attended the National Day military parade in Alba Iulia on Thursday, after participating in similar ceremonies in Bucharest earlier in the day.
Compiled from Agerpres