CSAT meeting: Increasing allied and US forces in Romania to go on. No reason for Romanians to worry

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President Klaus Iohannis announced after the meeting of the Supreme Council for Country Defence (CSAT) convened on Wednesday on the Russia-Ukraine crisis, that concrete steps will be continued to increase the presence of the allied and US forces on the Romanian territory. CSAT also tackled such topics as the management of the possible influx of refugees, with the Romanian president assuring that there no reasons for the citizens to be worried.

“We have agreed at the CSAT meeting on a series of important measures. There will be a continuation of concrete steps to increase the presence of the allied and US forces in Romania, as a measure to strengthen the security of the Romanian state,” President Iohannis told a press conference after the CSAT meeting.

“At the same time, the procedures for revising the draft laws on national security included in the Plan for the implementation of the National Strategy for Country Defence for the period 2020-2024 will be treated as top priority,” the head of state said.

The Chief of General Staff presented a plan of measures at the CSAT meeting that adds to the already existing plans, harmonized with NATO, to properly prepare Romania for any scenario.

“Romania, as a NATO member, now enjoys all the guarantees of security and there is no need for any Romanian citizen to be afraid. I assure the citizens of Romania that we are committed together with our allies and partners to discuss, decide and implement the most effective measures for our security, for the security of all of us,” Klaus Iohanni pointed out.

He added that CSAT had made a thorough review of the security situation in the region, including in terms of military, economic and energy impact, and also in terms of uncontrolled migration. “Romania shares over 600 kilometres of border with Ukraine and we must make sure we are prepared for any situation possible. The current security crisis created by Russia is not just about Ukraine, it’s not just about regional security in the Black Sea and not even about European security, it’s about the security of the entire Euro-Atlantic area. That is why at this time it is important for NATO and the EU to display unity and solidarity,” Iohannis stated.

According to the head of state, escalating tensions and a massive consolidation of the Russian military presence in the vicinity of Ukraine and the Black Sea region are affecting international security and stability.

These steps taken by Russia highlight the possibility of it using force against Ukraine, with all the consequences that may arise from that. Also, the recent actions of the Russian side, through the proposals submitted in December, try to unacceptably change the parameters of the European security architecture,” said Iohannis, adding that that there are concerns about the possibility of hybrid tactics continuing and their use being deepened, as it complicates the security state, including in terms of responses.

Iohannis said that a whole range of potential actions were looked into, from cyberattacks designed to destabilise institutions and critical infrastructure, as happened recently in Ukraine, to using energy to achieve political goals or using misinformation and propaganda.

The Romanian president explained that our country continues to support the current approach at the Euro-Atlantic level, showing that the country has been very actively involved from a diplomatic point of view in adopting decisions at NATO and EU level using its geographical position and strategic interest in the stability of NATO’s Eastern Neighbourhood and the European Union.

Iohannis pointed out that diplomatic dialogue must play a key role in easing the current situation.

“Recent talks with the Russian Federation, including those at the NATO-Russia Council meeting, have provided a detailed overview of NATO’s approach of the current security situation, emphasising the clear goal of de-escalation. We unequivocally conveyed to the Russian Federation our allied security interests and concerns over its conduct in recent years, including of late. We sent and continue to send clear messages, along with our allies and partners, that emphasise our commitment to upholding the fundamental principles and values of the Euro-Atlantic area of which we are a part, as well as the principles and rules of international law. At the same time, we reiterated our support for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine and its other Eastern partners, as well as for strengthening their resilience. However, we must also be prepared for the scenario in which the Russian side will refuse to continue on the path of dialogue,” the President maintained.

The president reiterated the need to strengthen the NATO presence on NATO’s eastern flank, including in Romania.

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