The Romania-Poland-Turkey Trilateral is working very well, and its relevance and usefulness have increased significantly, contributing in its 9 years of existence to strengthening the North Atlantic Alliance, as well as to ensuring the security of the eastern flank, at the Black Sea included, Romanian Foreign Minister Bogdan Aurescu told the plenary session of the Romania-Poland-Turkey Trilateral Summit, which he attended together with his counterparts Zbigniew Rau and Mevlut Cavuoglu. At the conclusion of the session the three Foreign Ministers signed, in a first for this format, a Joint Statement.
"Thank you, on this occasion again, for accepting this visit to Romania for us to continue our effective Romania-Poland-Turkey three-way dialogue on security issues. Our discussions of last night and today have been substantial and very useful, I would say that they were excellent, and they are reflected in the Joint Statement we just signed. (...) I would like to thank my colleagues Mevlut and Zbigniew for their openness during the negotiations on our Statement, which is a first for our format, proving once again how much our trilateral cooperation has advanced," said Bogdan Aurescu.
The Romanian Minister of Foreign Affairs brought to mind that in 2009, when he had the idea of creating this format, in his then capacity as Secretary of State for Strategic Affairs, he did not think that the Trilateral would become so necessary.
"Today I can say without hesitation that this Trilateral, which started to be very active in 2012, (....) works very well, and its relevance and usefulness have increased significantly, contributing in its 9 years of existence to reinforcing the North Atlantic Alliance, as well as to ensuring the security of the eastern flank, at the Black Sea included," Aurescu said.
"The special interest topics remain participation in the NATO multinational structures hosted by the 3 states, the implementation of the allied decisions, with emphasis, from Romania's perspective, on the package of measures on the Black Sea security agreed at NATO level, but also support for eastern partners. Also, we decided for our embassies and missions abroad to deepen trilateral cooperation and coordination on security," Aurescu said.
"In the context of the Russian troops build-up, we discussed in detail, already yesterday evening, the recent worrying security developments in and around Ukraine, as well as further development prospects, as well as de-escalation and defusing measures, including concrete ways to support Ukraine. Yesterday's announcement on the withdrawal of Russian troops, which is a move in the right direction, does not change the need to continue the analysis of the causes of this very tense situation, to identify de-escalation measures and to avoid similar situations in the future," said Aurescu.
"We approached the very important developments that have taken place recently at NATO level, as well as those that will take place this year. In this regard, the operational and conceptual contributions of Romania, Poland and Turkey to NATO actions in the region are and remain essential. Today too we had very substantive discussions, we reviewed the results of the main NATO developments, the recent ministerial meetings, we discussed follow-up actions, we approached the preparation of the NATO Summit on June 14 this year, which is very important because it will allow us to reaffirm allied unity and solidarity and especially to reinforce a strong transatlantic relationship, which is the cornerstone of Euro-Atlantic security. We believe that the 2021 NATO Summit will be a very important milestone in the evolution of the Alliance. We emphasized today that we want NATO to become politically and militarily stronger, an actor with a real global footprint," Aurescu said.
"We also highlighted the importance of further strengthening the allied deterrence and defense posture on the eastern flank, including in its south, especially in the light of security developments in the Black Sea region and in general, in the light of the progressive consolidation in recent years of the Russian military presence in the region. We also supported the consolidation of NATO action for promoting resilience and innovation, highlighting the Euro-Atlantic Resilience Center Romania is setting up and which will become operational in the coming months. We invited both Poland and Turkey, as well as other allies and partners, to participate with us in the development of this Center. We emphasized the special importance Romania attaches to the NATO 2030 strategic reflection process and in this line, we expressed appreciation for the activity of NATO's Secretary General. We want a new NATO strategy concept that reflects current realities," Aurescu said.
Also on Friday, in a first for the Romania-Poland-Turkey Trilateral format, Georgian and Ukrainian Foreign Ministers David Zalkaliani and Dmytro Kuleba will participate, at the initiative of Minister Aurescu, in a special working session with the Foreign Ministers of the Trilateral, given the importance of the Eastern Neighborhood.