DefMin Fifor: 2017 is the year of Romania's Army modernisation

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2017 is the year of Romania's Army modernisation, which begins a wide process of endowment with modern armament systems for all force categories, National Defence Minister Mihai Fifor mentions in a message sent on the occasion of celebrating the Defence General Staff Day.

According to him, Romania has committed within NATO to allot two percent of the GDP to defence starting 2017, for a minimum ten-year period, and the Romanian Army endowment plan over 2017-2026 includes eight essential programmes and has been developed in accordance with the allotted funds.

"Romania's Army begins a wide endowment process with modern armament systems for all force categories, and is presented as a modern structure and adapted to the current challenges, guarantor of the country's sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity (...). This year we'll begin the programme to modernise Romania's army, through the acquisition of the first Patriot system and the first batch of 8X8 armoured personnel carriers. Furthermore, the acquisition of transport helicopters from IAR Ghimbav, in partnership with Airbus, and that of transport and attack helicopters from Bell Helicopters, in cooperation with IAR Ghimbav, is undergoing several stages of preparation. It is a huge effort and I am asking all those involved to be thorough in observing the legislation and the procedures corresponding to all acquisitions," Minister Fifor's message sent to AGERPRES on Sunday reads.

The Defence Minister also mentioned that Romania's Army represents at present a new and modern construction, compatible with the armies of the other NATO and EU member states, and ensuring the necessary resources will successfully continue the process of transforming the Army in all its sectors in order to be efficient in crises and military operations which it will be participating in.

"The summer of 2017 has been a hot one in terms of military exercises. Should I only bring to mind Saber Guardian 2017, the biggest exercise in Romania's history, with a participation of over 25,000 servicemen from 22 allied and partner countries, and Noble Jump 17, the biggest NATO exercise this year, with a participation of over 4,000 allied military, these show the intensity and complexity of your work. These add to the over 100 multinational and 400 national exercises. There has been a special effort in the line of management and planning, and you, the ones who have coordinated this entire process, deserve our appreciation. All these activities, besides their training role, have shown the response and deterrence capacity of the allied and partner countries in a collective defence scenario and the high-level of forces interoperability. (...) Even at the moment, over 900 military are conducting battle missions in various theatres of operations. It is a great achievement for you, who, 24/7, run, coordinate, monitor and support the activity of these servicemen to flawlessly accomplish their missions and I am grateful for this. (...) On the Day of the Defence General Staff, I am congratulating you for your perseverance and abnegation in acting to accomplish the entrusted missions and I am wishing you success in everything that you carry out to increase the prestige of the elite body your are part of," the National Defence Minister's message also reads. AGERPRES (RO — author: Oana Malina Negrea, editor: Mihai Simionescu; EN — editor: Adina Panaitescu)

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