Euro-Atlantic Security through Regional Cooperation"
H.E. Mr. Mihai-Razvan Ungureanu
Secretary of State
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Romania
Ladies and Gentlemen,
This EAPC Ministerial has a special significance. It is the first to
take place after wide ranging political and security related developments
in Europe. We gathered today just a couple of months after a new and more
democratic leadership has been established in FRY, and a few days after
the Nice European Council Meeting adopted important decisions regarding
the Common European Security and Defense Policy.
At the same time, this meeting takes place only two weeks before the
OSCE Chairmanship-in-Office will be assumed by Romania. As you well know,
the presidential and parliamentary elections in my country ended last
Sunday and their outcome is now clear. I am therefore bringing the message
of the newly elected authorities in Bucharest. Romania will consolidate
its democratic institutions and will stay the course of reforms, thus
speeding up the process of economic recovery. Its foreign policy will
not change. Romania will continue to enhance its contribution to the development
of good neighborly relations and will further promote cooperative security
in the Euro-Atlantic area. The new government and the elected President
are committed to accelerate the process of Romania's integration in NATO
and the European Union.
As we are discussing today about cooperation in the Euro-Atlantic area,
let me reiterate Romania's commitment to better use EAPC and PfP as appropriate
instruments for securing and amplifying the achievements of countries
and institutions that cooperate towards solving security problems on the
continent. It is my government's determination to participate any new,
pragmatic and credible EAPC/PfP endeavors that cope with new security
challenges throughout Europe and beyond.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The situation in SouthEastern Europe is gradually improving. SouthEastern
Europe has become more secure and the region has made a new step toward
enhancing its stability. Romania warmly welcomes FRY's admission to the
United Nations, the OSCE, the Stability Pact and other international fora,
as well as the normalization of its relationship with NATO member countries
The process of consolidating security and stability in the region gained
a new momentum. However, there are still concerning evolutions and tensions
in the area such are the recent clashes in the Southern part of Serbia
and the violent incidents in Kosovo. In our view, they should not be allowed
to reverse the positive trend that gives hope for peace and the prevention
of future conflicts.
From this perspective NATO's involvement in the region is of a major
importance. KFOR and SFOR should remain at the very core of the international
community's efforts in support of peace and reconstruction in the Balkans.
Romania will continue to participate in both NATO led-missions and will
maintain its commitment of participating in other international initiatives
in the region, such as the Stability Pact.
It is against this background that Romania understands to enhance its
contribution towards the implementation of SEEI objectives. In our view,
this initiative has become of crucial importance in setting the ground
for finding common solutions to common problems in SouthEastern Europe.
SEEI promotes mechanisms of interaction in the field of security, therefore
substantiating NATO's commitment to support the goals of the Stability
A major development in the framework of SEEI is the SouthEastern Common
Assessment Paper (SEECAP), a Romanian initiative designed to harmonize
security perceptions and strategies in the region. The presence of FR
Yugoslavia at the first official meeting on SEECAP, held in Bucharest,
on 20th November 2000, and its inclusion in the process were greeted and
subsequent participation is expected at the follow-up meetings in Brussels.
Helping regional countries to agree on common security perceptions is
a proof that interoperability starts with people's mind. Common perceptions
and understanding on security issues provide for confidence and trust.
It is therefore relevant that SEECAP participating countries agreed upon
the guidelines of the process, including the scope and the envisaged content
of the document as you can see in the distributed Progress Report.
Another project in the framework of SEEI is the "Retraining of redundant
military personnel". This project was selected for a 2 Million-Euro
funding at the Conference for Regional Financing of the Stability Pact.
After the completion of a structured project using the expertise provided
by several NATO countries, the Economic Committee of NATO recommended
the project for financing to the World Bank, who subsequently released
a first part of the funding (500.000 USD).
Romania is strongly involved in a number of other security-related initiatives
from which we can highlight a few. Our country participates in the SouthEastern
Europe Defense Ministerial process (SEDM) that took a more result oriented
course with proposals of creating the Engineering Task Force (ETF) and
the Crisis Information Network (CIN). Both are connected with the development
of the Multinational Peace Force SouthEastern Europe (MFPSEE) and its
brigade (SEEBRIG) that organized its first exercise at the end of September,
as an expression of the already gained operational status.
The Bucharest based the Regional SECI Center for fight against crossborder
crime is already operational. Apart of the countries from the region many
NATO countries participate as observers, among them USA, Great Britain,
Germany, France and Italy, and we explore the modalities for FRY to join
in. In January next year we expect the liaison officers to take their
positions at the Center and start their activity.
Romania will assume the OSCE Chairmanship-in-Office having as one of
the main objectives to use all the opportunities granted by this position
in order to develop the OSCE-NATO/EAPC co-operation, both organizations
having common interests and goals with reference to the European security.
We are ready to develop a genuine dialogue on this issue in the EAPC framework.
Romania welcomes the designation of Prague as the capital for the next
NATO Summit, in 2002. We share the view that this decision is a relevant
symbol for the process of NATO's enlargement. Our country gives a special
importance to the fulfillment of the Membership Action Plan provisions
and will stay the course of preparing for being invited to join the Alliance.
Romania will promote and defend the principles of self-differentiation
and solidarity of all candidates to NATO membership, the cooperation of
whom should be encouraged.
We consider that all these Romanian contributions to enhancing security
and stability in SouthEastern Europe certify Romania's status as a security
provider. Our determination to consolidate peace and stability in the
Euro-Atlantic area stems from our national interests and complies with
the spirit and the objectives of NATO and EU enlargement.
Thank you for your attention.