The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bogdan Aurescu, stated at the World Economic Forum in Davos that, under the current conditions, the international community cannot afford a position of strategic ambiguity regarding the war in Ukraine, underlining the importance of defending fundamental Euro-Atlantic values, informs a Foreign Affairs Ministry (MAE) press release sent to AGERPRES on Friday.
Minister Aurescu participated, on Friday, in the 53rd edition of the World Economic Forum in Davos, as the main speaker, in the session titled “A new Helsinki for the world”, having in the center the identification of a new model for dialogue and coordination in security matters. The session was moderated by the editor-in-chief of the Foreign Affairs publication, Daniel Kurtz-Phelan.
During the debate, together with his counterpart from Slovenia, Tanja Fajon, and Pakistan, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, and the president of the Freedom House Board of Directors, Jane Harman, the head of Romanian diplomacy addressed the current geopolitical developments, especially the issue of global reporting on the illegal war by the Russian Federation in Ukraine.
Minister Aurescu referred to the seriousness of the current security crisis, as well as the main risks and challenges for the international system. He emphasized the need to maintain order based on rules, which would support peace and facilitate the solution of global problems.
In opening the debate, the head of Romanian diplomacy reviewed the transformations that the Euro-Atlantic community has gone through in recent decades, from the EU and NATO expansion processes, to the crises of recent years that have affected the European continent: the economic crisis, the migration crisis, the COVID-19 pandemic, currently followed by the war against Ukraine. Minister Aurescu highlighted that the current war includes a series of other overlapping crises – security, energy and food.
“The Russian aggression against Ukraine represents an attack on the parameters of the Euro-Atlantic security architecture and the rules-based international order, as well as the democratic values that are the basis of the Euro-Atlantic community,” states the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Minister Aurescu highlighted that the current crisis generated by the war in Ukraine has also brought with it a series of opportunities for strengthening Euro-Atlantic security cohesion, which would have been unthinkable before the war, such as the granting of EU candidate status to Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova, the initiation of the process by which Finland and Sweden will become member states of the North Atlantic Alliance, the decisions of the NATO Summit in Madrid regarding the strengthening of the allied deterrence and defense posture on the Eastern Flank, which determined the presence in Romania of over 5,000 allied troops, as well as the increase in national budget allocations for defense, from 2 percent to 2.5 percent and the acceleration of efforts to reduce and eliminate energy dependence on Russia.
The minister mentioned Romania’s support efforts for Ukraine – including the reception of over 3.3 million refugees and the transit of over 11.2 million tons of Ukrainian grain and agricultural products, as well as the need to support this country further.
During the discussions, answering a question from the moderator, Minister Bogdan Aurescu pleaded for the correct recognition of the nature of the current aggression and the fact that Ukraine is the victim of Russian aggression, and any peace negotiations, which must begin only when Ukraine decides this aspect, considering the violation of its territorial integrity, it must start from this reality.
He highlighted that the Russian threat to the parameters of the Euro-Atlantic security architecture, with an impact on the “Global South”, as well as to democratic values, represents an essential stake of any peace talks.
From this point of view, the minister emphasized that, under the current conditions, the international community cannot afford a position of strategic ambiguity in connection with the war in Ukraine. He showed that the security architecture based on the Helsinki Final Act of 1975 remains valid, being imperative to defend this architecture and the fundamental values of the Euro-Atlantic community, including through the creation of effective sanctioning mechanisms, in order to respond to situations of serious violations of international law, as Russia has done, the MAE press release mentioned.
In the intervention at the end of the session, Aurescu pointed out that the war waged by Russia in Ukraine is taking place outside the limits of the international order based on rules, which should not be modified for this reason, but, on the contrary, defended against the challenges coming from those who try to undermine this order. “The attack against this global order cannot justify the change of the global order,” the MAE informs.
According to the head of Romanian diplomacy, a discussion on the Helsinki Final Act is not appropriate at this moment, but it could take place around the 50th anniversary of its adoption, in 2025, under the conditions in which the war in Ukraine will have ended until then, the lessons learned from this crisis and from the associated crises will be able to be extracted.
Minister Bogdan Aurescu participated, on Thursday and Friday, in the 53rd edition of the World Economic Forum (WEF), organized in Davos-Klosters, in Switzerland.