NATO expects to establish its headquarters in Romania to counter military threats from Russia in Crimea, and safety control in the Black Sea, Chairman of the NATO mission and Director of the NATO Liaison Office in Ukraine Alexander Vinnikov told a QHA correspondent.
“NATO analyses, what measures can be taken, since the Russia’s militarization of Crimea has changed its strategy in the Black Sea region. In this regard, the NATO initiative to establish its headquarters in Romania for coordination of military exercises is the optimal solution,” he said.
The diplomat also noted that NATO's position on the occupation of Crimea is clear and adamant.
“We do not recognize the occupation of the peninsula and believe that Russia should respect the territorial integrity of Ukraine,” he stressed.
Ukraine responded positively to Romania’s initiative to establishment the Black Sea fleet under the aegis of NATO and is ready to join the formation.
Ukraine and Romania are also considering the establishment of Ukrainian-Romanian-Bulgarian brigade.
Russian Ambassador to NATO Alexander Grushko said that the Montreux Convention should not be violated. He noted that the Montreux Convention on the status of Bosporus and Dardanelles straits from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean "should remain inviolable."
Speaking at a press conference in Brussels on the first day of the NATO defense ministers meeting, the Secretary General of NATO Jens Stoltenberg said that the defense ministers of the Alliance countries discussed the creation of a Romanian framework team as part of the "South-East" Multinational Division.