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Update: NATO Day – celebrated in Romania. President Iohannis: We’ll be next to our allies

NATO Day is celebrated in Romania since 2005, on the first Sunday in April, under a legislative proposal. In 2017, the NATO Day in Romania is celebrated on Sunday, April 2.

The choice of date takes into account the proximity of the official date of accession to NATO (March 29, 2004) and the date of hoisting the Romanian flag at NATO headquarters in Brussels (April 2, 2004).

In a message he sent on this occasion, President Klaus Iohannis said the collective allied defence means today more than ever the awareness of the fact that each and every country’s security could be more efficiently secured together instead of separately.

“Today, 2 April 2017, we celebrate as we always do on the very first Sunday of April “NATO Day in Romania.” The moment marks our country’s membership to the most powerful political and military alliance in history and to a community of values and principles, of which the respect towards democracy and the rule of law stand out. Therefore, for almost one decade the Romanian citizens enjoy the strongest security and defence guarantees in the history of our modern national history. To Romania, the NATO has become part of our identity as a nation and at the same time the path to put into practice our national security interests. The Alliance has offered democratic Romania a chance to validate for good its democratic, pro-Western vocation,” the head of state said in his message.

Iohannis asserts that the Strategic Partnership with the United States of America, the NATO and EU membership are the basics of our foreign policy, and the construction of strong Romania in Europe and in the world is tightly connected to them.

“We are and will be alongside our allies in the operations theatres, in the command structures and in the training centres, as well as in the politico-military structures where the grounds of the collective security of all of the allied countries’ and partners’ citizens are put. We will be there so we could proudly say not only that “Romania is in the NATO” but also that “NATO means Romania, too,” President Iohannis said in his message.

The NATO Day was celebrated through a series of events organized in all localities where military units are located, in countries where Romania has accredited defence attaches and in the military bases in the operational theatres where Romanian troops are deployed. Staffs of all categories of military forces, the headquarters, the military units across the country organize military ceremonies, open days, cultural, artistic and sports activities, conferences and exhibitions on this occasion.

In 2016, on the occasion of NATO Day in Romania, in the Open Days event, the Ministry of National Defence was open to the public, and a military ceremony dedicated to our country’s accession to NATO was held.

“NATO Day is a public holiday dedicated to democracy, to the European and to the Euro-Atlantic spirit,” the MoD says.

About Valeriu Lazar