NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, and the Romanian President, Klaus Iohannis, participate at the NATO Force Integration Unit inauguration ceremony
NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, and the Romanian President, Klaus Iohannis, participated on Thursday, 2 July 2015, at the inauguration ceremony of the NATO Force Integration Unit in Bucharest. Secretary Stoltenberg, thanked Romania for the considerable efforts to strengthen the security of the Alliance. During the press conference he stated that „NATO is strong alongside Romania, and Romania is strong alongside NATO”. Additionally, NATO Secretary General appreciated Romania’s decision to increase defense spending by 2017 to 2% of the GDP. On the morning of July 2nd, President Klaus Iohannis, the interim prime minister Gabriel Oprea, the minister of external affairs Bogdan Aurescu and the minister of national defense Mircea Dușa, held talks with Secretary Stoltenberg regarding the way in which NATO adapts to security threats coming from the East and the South. The NATO Force Integration Unit is a multinational HQ for command and control assumed by Romania at the Wales Summit in September 2014. NATO will initially create 6 such structures on the eastern flanc of the Allianc in Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Romania. NFIU ROU will become operational by the time of the Warsaw Summit in July 2016. The HQ in Bucharest will consist of 40 officers, warrant officers and NCOs specialists. They come from 12 contributing countries: Albania, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Great Britain, Poland, Spain, Portugal, Romania, the United States of America, Turkey and Hungary. The NATO Force Integration Unit is thus the first NATO HQ on Romanian territory and will be led by colonel Cătălin Ticulescu, an officer with experience in both theatres of operations as well as NATO headquarters.