Embassy News

The Anniversary of the 5th and 6th wave of NATO expansion at the Embassy of Romania

Press Release

The Embassy of Romania to the People’s Republic of China hosted, on the 2nd of April 2019, a ceremony that marked the 15th anniversary of the 5th wave of NATO expansion that welcomed seven countries in the NATO forces: Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia. Albania and Croatia, which celebrate 10 years since becoming members states of the North Atlantic Treaty, joined the 7 states in their celebration. The event was aimed to mark at the same time, in Beijing, 70 years since the foundation of NATO.

The 9 states, which represent the 5th and 6th wave of NATO expansion, shook hands at the Embassy of Romania in Beijing to mark a historical moment for the North Atlantic Treaty. The ceremony in Beijing was attended by ambassadors, defense attachés and diplomats from the partner countries, re-gathering the NATO family in a moment of symbolic value for the Allies. 

Held 2 days ahead the 70th anniversary of the foundation of NATO, that took place on 4th of April 1949, the event was a great opportunity for the present states to reaffirm their beliefs and support for the fundaments of the North Atlantic Treaty that they have embraced and promoted since 1949. Established as a political organization, NATO was formed by independent states whose mutual objective was to guarantee the freedom and security of the Allies through political and military means and through the development of the concept of the joint defense. Democracy, the rule of law, the security of the citizen’s rights and the preservation of global peace are only a few of the principles and values that are guiding today the Allies in their efforts. NATO promotes democratic values and offers its members a consultation environment for cooperation and defense matters, contributes to the consolidation of trust and, on long term, to the prevention of conflicts. The Alliance stays devoted to the principle of solving conflicts through a peaceful matter.

The missions of securing the values of the world’s most powerful politico-military alliance have been materialized in numerous maneuver files. The 9 states of the 5th and 6th expansion wave have indemnified constant and consistent military forces for assistance, as well as for operations in Afghanistan, Kosovo and Iraq. Regarding Romania, these efforts are visible today through the participation of a number of 887 Romanian soldiers within NATO operations.   

Assigned by the other 8 Ambassadors, the Ambassador of Romania took over the stage and delivered a speech for unity, on behalf of all the 9 member states: „Years ago, we acceded not only to an international and powerful organization, but we rather returned back home, to a place where we historically belong to. We returned after spending almost 5 decades in the darkness of totalitarianism or dictatorship arbitrarily imposed to our people, to embrace again something which is naturally part of our DNA: a set of fundamental values and principles, in order to secure the global peace, security and prosperity. The NATO family is, therefore, more than an alliance – it is an embodiment of common views over the future of the world, with democracy, rule of law and respect for fundamental freedoms at its core. Since the establishment of NATO, 70 years ago, the world has gone through unprecedented changes. The wars and battles of today are carried also through intelligence and technology, and the security threats of today are more and more linked to the cyber-world, which go beyond any frontier and makes every single citizen a possible target. Here is where we must stand united more than ever in order to safeguard and protect our peoples’ rights.” The speech of the Romanian Ambassador ended with an encouragement, transmitted to all NATO partners to maintain an ”animus in consulendo liber” (n.r. the NATO motto).

The ceremony in Beijing was hosted by the Embassy of Romania in collaboration with the Office of Defense Attaché and jointly organized with the 8 partner states through common efforts.

On the 2nd of April, exactly 15 years ago, the Official Ceremony of the 7 states flag raise took place at the NATO Headquarters in Brussels. Thus, through this symbolic ceremony, Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia have officially become full-fledged NATO allies, after having handed the Accession Instruments in Washington on March 29th.    

On the same date, 2nd of April, 11 years ago, during the first NATO Summit organized by Romania, in Bucharest, Albania and Croatia have been officially invited to be a part of the Alliance. The accession of the 2 states was finalized 1 year later, the 2 countries handing the Accession Instruments on April 1st. The flags of the 2 countries completed the 28 member states frame on April 7th. In 2007, Montenegro finalized its negotiations for enrollment, at present moment the Alliance being formed by 29 full rights members. 

You can find more photos on the photo gallery.

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