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Romania reconfirms its “firm commitment” on Afghanistan

President Traian Basescu reconfirmed on Tuesday evening “Romania’s firm commitment as regards the missions in Afghanistan.”

“As a state which participates in Afghanistan, starting with 2002, Romania joins its allies by reconfirming, on the occasion of this summit, our firm pledge and unitary vision for success together with our partners,” the Romanian president stressed on the opening of the Transatlantic Forum organized by the German Marshall Fund on April 1-3 in Bucharest. He added that NATO success is “crucial for the future of that country, for the war against terrorism and, consequently, for our security.” At the same time, Basescu noted that NATO understood that the European security cannot be defined in strictly geographical terms. “In order to protect our allies’ security we must bring our contribution to the international security,” concluded Basescu.

According to earlier reports, Basescu on Monday evening stated in a public television broadcast that Romania will not be an unconditional provider of troops to Afghanistan. He said that Romania is ready to contribute troops, yet not while “others have withdrawn their forces or relocated them to less dangerous areas.” “Another request to supplement troops will definitely come, but Romania will have a correct approach of the issue. In Afghanistan we defend the credibility of NATO, the security structure Romania belongs to,” said Basescu.

Basescu underscored, that after the 2006 Riga Summit, Romania observed its assumed commitments, supplementing troops deployed to Afghanistan from 500 to 780. The president said that at the request of the NATO secretary general, Romania will set at NATO’s disposition a 120-strong company, yet not while others leave such solicitations unanswered or Romanian troops are in the south and others keep their forces stationed in the east, where “not much is happening.” “I urge the allies to see that we all have a similar participation,” stressed Basescu. (