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President Iohannis: The heroes of the Romanian nation were and continue to be genuine symbols of selflessness, courage and a sense of duty

Klaus Iohannis

The heroes of the Romanian nation were and continue to be genuine symbols of selflessness, courage and a sense of duty, President Klaus Iohannis said on Thursday at a Heroes' Day ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior in Bucharest.

"We are here today to celebrate together the day of our heroes at the same time with the feast of the Ascension of Our Lord, a moment of a profound spiritual significance. We are paying our pious homage to the sacrifice of all Romanian warriors who, over the centuries, sacrificed their lives on the battlefields, for the Romanian land, in defence of their country and the integrity of their nation, for freedom, justice and democracy," said Iohannis.

The president added that the values and principles that guided the destiny of the nation's heroes remain landmarks of responsibility.

"The values and principles that guided their destiny remain our new landmarks of responsibility to bequeath to our descendants a developed Romania, whose citizens live in unity, prosperity and solidarity, a dignified country and fully integrated with the community of democratic countries," Iohannis added.

He mentioned that today's Romanian armed forces are "modern, able to fulfill their missions" living up to their commitments jointly with Romania's NATO allies and together with other European Union member states for the implementation of the EU Common Security and Defence Policy.

"Romania is currently a true security provider in the Black Sea region, a credible and strong ally and partner in NATO and the European Union, as well as in its relationship with its strategic partner, the United States of America. Today, we are paying tribute to our military killed in the war zones in Afghanistan, Iraq and the Western Balkans, as well as on missions under the auspices of international organisations to which Romania is a party. They fought to defend the interests of our country, demonstrating Romania's firm commitment to its allies, to the values of democracy. The lessons in devotion, altruism, patriotism and the spirit of sacrifice represented by the sacrifice of the heroes of the Romanian nation must inspire us all, bring us closer to the values on which modern Romania is built: unity , democracy, prosperity and solidarity," added the chief of state.

The ceremony opens with the Romanian national anthem being sung. A religious service was held to commemorate the nation's heroes. President Klaus Iohannis, Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies Ludovic Orban, Prime Minister Florin Citu, Defence Minister Nicolae Ciuca, other officials called out the names of some heroes who fell in their line of duty in the country's wars. A wreath-laying ceremony followed.

The event was also attended by Deputy Prime Minister Dan Barna, ministers, Bucharest Mayor General Nicusor Dan, and other officials.

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