Today, January 30, at the MND seat, the minister of national defence, Gabriel Leş, had bilateral meetings with UNO under-secretary general for peace-keeping, Jean-Pierre Lacroix, and European Defence Agency chief executive, Jorge Domecq.
The meetings took place on the margins of the Informal meeting of the EU defence ministers organised in Bucharest on January 30-31, in the context of the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the EU. The minister of national defence thanked the UNO official for participating in the meeting and reiterated our country’s commitment to staying an important partner in the international organisations where it is a member, namely the UNO, NATO and the European Union.
“Romania is firmly determined to support a peaceful conflict resolution of all the crises the international community is faced with in this period, the same way it has done in the 27 years of troop contribution to the operations deployed under the United Nations aegis. Since 1991, around 10,000 Romanian troops have participated in 25 such missions in different areas around the globe”, Gabriel Leş emphasised.
The minister of national defence also pointed out that Romania had been a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council four times before and that it applied for a new term, namely 2020-2021.
In this context, the Romanian official recalled that our country would continue to contribute to the international peacekeeping efforts, “the offer to participate, starting October 2019, with a squadron of transport helicopters in the MINUSMA mission from Mali being a significant illustration in that respect”.
Upon the conclusion of his meeting with the UNO official, the minister reaffirmed that during its Presidency of the Council of the EU, Romania will militate for a better structured and more systematic cooperation between the EU and the UNO, with a view to increasing efficiency in the strategic partnership between the two organisations in point of peacekeeping missions and crisis management. The second bilateral meeting, between Minister Leş and EDA Chief Executive Domecq, focused on cooperation between Romania and the European Defence Agency.
“We are aware that in the current context, EDA will play a more prominent role, built around a stronger security and defence dimension in the EU, in perfect coordination with NATO”, the minister of defence stated. The two officials exchanged views on the prospects of the Common Security and Defence Policy of the EU, with accent placed on ensuring consistency among the different recently launched initiatives (PESCO, CARD, EDF). The topics of discussion also included the Romanian Presidency’s priorities in the field of security and the events organised in cooperation with the Agency in Romania, to be held in Bucharest in the next period.