President Iohannis warns over increasing militarised presence in the Black Sea, urges the Romanian Gov’t, DefMin to speed up the Army’s endowment plan

Romanian President Klaus Iohannis has stated during the international conference “Enhancing NATO’s Eastern Flank” on Wednesday that the Black Sea region is still marked by frozen conflicts and latent tensions. “Moreover, we see an increase of the confrontation climate, the advanced militarization of the Black Sea and the escalation of the hybrid actions, extremely dangerous through their effects, which are targeting both us and also our partners, NATO’s partners in the region”, the head of state pointed out.

He underlined that all these have major impact that is exceeding the Black Sea area, and which “is affecting the European space and eroding the Euro-Atlantic security architecture as a whole”.

“I want to be very clear: security in the Black Sea and on the entire Eastern flank is directly reflecting on the Euro-Atlantic security. Any deficiency, any vulnerability in the Black Sea becomes one of the entire Alliance, as a whole, while just inviting to hostile actions“, Klaus Iohannis stated, urging the Romanian Government and Defence Ministry to speed up the Army’s endowment plan.

I said it before and I repeat: I warn Romania’s Government and particularly the Defence Ministry to act more efficiently to achieve the essential strategic acquisition programmes that we committed to, so that the allotted sums could be fully and usefully spent. I strongly believe it is in Romania’s interest to enhance its national defence capabilities, so that the Romanian citizens can be safe”, he concluded.

Romania has recently hosted an exercise in the Black Sea involving NATO ships. Exercise Sea Shield involved more than 20 ships and crews from Romania, Bulgaria, Canada, Greece, the Netherlands and Turkey. Five ships from Standing NATO Maritime Group Two (SNMG2) participated in the exercise, which ran from 5 to 13 April. Sea Shield was designed to practise joint warfare tactics and techniques used against underwater, surface and air threats.

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