If drone debris lands in Romania NATO will view it as accidental, says senior official

14 September, 06:48 PM
Mircea Geoană (Photo:NATO North Atlantic Treaty Organization/Flickr)

Mircea Geoană (Photo:NATO North Atlantic Treaty Organization/Flickr)

Drone debris that falls on Romanian territory is accidental and does not constitute a threat to the NATO alliance, NATO Deputy Secretary General Mircea Geoană said during a meeting with Moldovan Prime Minister Dorin Recean in Chisinau on Sep. 14.

“The events on the border with Romania "should be classified as incidents, not as targeted attacks. We do not have a deliberate attack on a NATO ally, Geoană said.

“Incidents can happen, have happened in the past, and may happen in the future. My message is the same from Chisinau, Bucharest, Brussels, and Washington: trust NATO! We are doing our duty.”

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Shaheds in Romania: What is Known

This is not the first time Russian drone debris has been discovered in Romania. More wreckage was discovered on Sep. 4, 2.5 kilometers southeast of the Romanian settlement of Plauru, after Russia carried out a massive aerial attack on southern Ukraine.

Ukrainian border guards recorded two detonations of Shahed kamikaze drones on Romanian territory during the Russian attack on Ukraine in the early hours of Sept. 4. Spokesman for Ukraine’s State Border Guard Service Andriy Demchenko said Ukraine had informed Romania about the drone impacts on its territory.

The Ukrainian Air Force reported that 23 out of 32 Shaheds were shot down during the raid, during which Russia targeted the infrastructure of Izmail District of Odesa Oblast, which borders Romania.

At the time, the Romanian Defense Ministry “categorically denied” reports about the falling debris. According to the ministry, Russia’s attack “never created a direct military threat to the national territory or territorial waters of Romania.”

Then, on Sept. 6, Romanian Defense Minister Angel Tilvar subsequently acknowledged for the first time that parts of a Russian drone used to attack Ukraine had indeed fallen on his country’s territory.

As a result, Bucharest initiated an investigation and informed NATO command about the incident. Romania’s President Klaus Iohannis referred to the drone debris as a “serious violation of [Romania’s] sovereignty.”

NATO member countries expressed “strong solidarity” with Romania in a statement published by Romania’s ambassador to NATO, Dan Neculescu. However, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg stated on Sept. 7 that the alliance did not see any indication that there had been a deliberate Russian attack on Romania.

Fragments of a UAV have been discovered in Romania following Russia’s nighttime attack on Odesa Oblast on Sep. 13, the Romanian Ministry of Defense reported.

Fragments of another drone similar to those used by the Russian military were found in Romania on Sept. 9.

The Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs summoned the Chargé d'Affaires of the Russian Federation after more fragments of a drone similar to those used by the Russian army were found on Romanian territory, local outlet Agerpres reported on Sept. 10.

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