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Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bogdan Aurescu, had a meeting on Friday with the US Ambassador to Bucharest Hans Klemm, and with Terri Sewell, a member of the House of Representatives of the US Congress, elected in Alabama, on which occasion they discussed about the Strategic Partnership between Romania and the United States and the new Romanian Government's firm commitment to continue to earmark 2 per cent of the GDP for defence.

The head of Romanian diplomacy underscored the excellence of the Strategic Partnership between Romania and the United States of America, evoking at the same time the very good discussions between the President of Romania, Klaus Iohannis, and the US President, Donald Trump, on August 20, in Washington, when they approached the different means of strengthening the most important aspects of the Strategic Partnership.

Bogdan Aurescu underscored the military and security dimension of the Strategic Partnership, reiterating the importance of increasing US military presence in Romania, the new Romanian Government's firm commitment to continue to earmark 2 per cent of the GDP for defence, as well as the need to strengthen the Eastern Flank, especially in the south, through an increased allied participation in the Multinational Brigade and in the Black Sea.

The Romanian official voiced the appreciation of the Romanian state for the sustainable partnership with the Alabama National Guard and mentioned at the same time the common successful project of the presence in Romania of the ballistic missile shield at Deveselu, and also the importance of its adequate security.

Moreover, Aurescu referred to the tight cooperation in the energy security and cyber security fields existing between Romania and the UN and underscored Ludovic Orban Government's strong commitment to the rule of law and justice independence.

The Romanian Minister of Foreign Affairs and the two US officials reviewed the regional developments, with an emphasis on the current political situation in the Republic of Moldova. On this occasion, the Romanian dignitary voiced the Romanian Government's for the Executive in Chisinau and underscored how important is for Romania that the Republic of Moldova maintains its European track.

Moreover, Aurescu asked the member of the House of Representatives of the US Congress to support Romania's efforts to enter the Visa Waiver programme, a very important objective for the Romanian citizens, most of them supporters of the Strategic Partnership with the USA.

MAE specifies that the US officials congratulated the new Minister of Foreign Affairs on taking office, highlighting at the same time his personal contribution to the development, in time, of the Strategic Partnership, including through the negotiation of the bilateral agreement on the ballistic missile shield.

At the same time, the two US officials expressed strong bipartisan support for Romania and the bilateral Strategic Partnership in the US Congress, appreciation for Romania's constant and consistent efforts to strengthen security at the Black Sea and NATO mission in Afghanistan, as well as its active role and involvement within the North Atlantic Alliance.

At the same time, they confirmed that the visa refusal rate of Romanian citizens continues to decrease, a fact evidenced by the very recent figures for the fiscal year 2019. Thus, it reached 9.11 per cent (from 10.44 per cent in 2018), the refusal rate below 3 per cent being the last remaining criterion to be met by Romania. AGERPRES (RO - author: Alina Novaceanu, editor: Mihai Simionescu; EN - editor: Cristina Zaharia)


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