NATO Force Integration Unit is activated Thursday, 3 September 2015, in Bucharest
On 3 September 2015, the first NATO HQ on Romanian territory was activated, in the presence of Sorin Ducaru, NATO assistant secretary general for emergent security problems, the NATO secretary general representative, lieutenant general Christopher Harper, general director of the NATO International Staff and Mircea Dușa, the Minister of National Defense.
Concomitantly, similar structures in Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland were activated. The creation of these units is part of a series of measures taken by NATO as a reply to the changes in the security environment in the region and their purpose is to improve the Alliance’s capacity to respond concretely and decisively to any hostile action pointed against a member state.
The ceremony that took place at the NFIU ROU HQ commenced with the introduction of the 12 flags that contribute with personnel at manning this HQ. Sorin Ducaru mentioned in his address that such HQs „constitute essential vectors of implementation of the action plan for increasing NATO’s operational capacity, the so called readiness action plan, as well as part of the most important NATO collective defense consolidation process since the end of the Cold War”.
„It is very important to mention that the action plan doesn’t not involve just the Very High Readiness Joint Task Force and the other 6 NFIU that we inaugurate today. The plan presumes, concomitantly, a comprehensive restructuring of the entire military force of NATO and the support of the decision making process within the Alliance” said lieutenant general Harper in his speech.
NATO Force Integration Unit Romania will function under the NATO Joint Force Command in Naples, Italy, and will act as liaison between NATO forces and the Host Nation, Romania. The creation of NFIU Romania was decided via the 32/2015 Governmental Decision adopted by the House of Deputies and the Senate on 23 June, by the name NATO Force Integration Unit (NFIU), in Bucharest Garrison.
After a short tour of the unit, the minister of national defense, mister Mircea Dușa, highlighted in his speech the historical significance of this structure, which comes 11 years after Romania’s entrance into NATO. „It is not a military structure, but rather a concrete and eloquent example of the Alliance’s engagement towards the defense of its members”.
The HQ is led by colonel Cătălin Ticulescu and of the 42 specialists that will conduct their activity in NFIU ROU, 15 will come from NATO contributing countries.