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Minister of Defence: There are signals that give us food for thought – antiaircraft protection from Deveselu must be strengthened

de Razvan Diaconu , 2.12.2016

mihnea-motoc-465x390-300x193We obviously have to think, and we do that together with our partners and allies, to some elements for strengthening the antiaircraft protection of the Deveselu unit, because there are obviously signs that give us food for thought and we should keep this aspect in our mind,” said the Minister of Defence Mihnea Motoc in an interview for Mediafax.

“The shield has nothing to do with Russia and is not likely to alter, affect in any way the strategic equation in the region.

The fact that Romania’s hosting of this unit is sometimes presented as an factor that transforms us into a target is regrettable (…)

It should be noted here again that, since the Warsaw summit, Deveselu unit is part of the integrated system of the alliance for ballistic missile defence, so we can no longer speak of isolated targets.

The issue should eventually arise under different parameters.

We obviously have to think, and we do that together with our partners and allies, to some elements for strengthening the antiaircraft protection of the Deveselu unit, because there are obviously signs that give us food for thought and we should keep this aspect in our mind,” said Minister Motoc.

Strengthened maritime training framework in the Black Sea

The multinational exercises in the Black Sea continue, also said the minister who explained the latest developments in this area: accepting the idea of a strengthened maritime training framework in the Black Sea and a maritime coordination body for the Black Sea:

“These exercises continue, they are the basis on which we started to define our initiative meaning a stronger systematization of these exercises, connecting them more closely and in a more institutionalized manner to NATO, NATO planning, MARCOM, which is The Allied Maritime Command and their exercise schedule.

Discussions continue and we have made a step forward, it is true, not as far-reaching as we expected in implementing the decisions that you mentioned from the Warsaw summit.

We made this step at the meeting of defence ministers from NATO countries in October.

Now we continue discussions with the allied coastal countries and NATO military authorities in order to reach the materialization of these decisions on two dimensions, at the next meeting, in February 2017.

One of them is to add the idea of a strengthened maritime training framework in the Black Sea.

The second is the approval of a maritime coordination body for the Black Sea. It remains to be seen where it will be hosted. What is important now is that this body would provide the connection to MARCOM, the relevant NATO department,” said Mihnea Motoc for Mediafax.

Participation in the multinational brigade – Germany will contribute staff officers

“At the ministries’ meeting in October, we were positively surprised by the large number of allies that announced their contribution, overall, to the advanced allied presence in the south-eastern flank.

We are talking about the land component, the multinational brigade, but also the sea and air components.

Seven allies agreed for their contributions to be publicly mentioned. There are also others who have expressed themselves in a favourable way.

Regarding the multinational brigade itself, by way of example, Germany has already confirmed participation with staff officers and studies other forms of contributing to the multinational brigade.

Let us not forget that it will be required not only immediate developments, in 2017, but further developments as well.

Portugal recently announced that will come with staff officers and join a Portuguese brigade.

Bulgaria will contribute 400 troops to the multinational brigade.

Poland also offers a company for the multinational brigade and we will do the same for the battle group having the United States as the framework nation in Poland.

There are also others and our immediate objective is to organize this puzzle of contributions into a coherent structure and this way ensure as quickly as possible the real multinational attribute of this brigade.

There were discussions at the beginning, given that the multinational brigade is built on an existing Romanian framework brigade, that would be a national foundation to which a NATO garment is added, which would not make it turn into an effective component of the allied presence. This is not the case at all, and that was proved in October and subsequently by the well-advanced discussions that we have with the allies that have volunteered to contribute to specifying how their contributions will go to the multinational brigade,” revealed the Minister of Defence.

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