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Romanian Prime Minister discusses sending Patriot system to Ukraine

Interview with Marcel Ciolacu, Prime Minister of Romania, about Patriot
Interview with Marcel Ciolacu, Prime Minister of Romania, about Patriot Copyright Euronews Romania
Copyright Euronews Romania
By Andra Diaconescu Euronews Romania with EBU
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Euronews Romania interviewed the country's Prime Minister about the possibility of supplying Ukraine with a Patriot system.

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Romanian officials are discussing the idea of supplying Ukraine with a state-of-the-art Patriot defence system.  

However, the Romanian president said it must be approved by the Supreme Council of National Defence.  

Euronews Romania spoke with the nation’s Prime Minister, Marcel Ciolacu, about how this would work.

"In the first place, the specialists must speak" he said, "This does not mean that if a system covers part of Ukraine, it does not also cover Romania. Here it is about specialists sitting at the table and finding the best solutions, and then the SCND can make the decision with all available information, so that it takes the best decision. So, at this moment, the proposal is under analysis".

Local media clarified that this meant the issue will not be discussed in public - but instead privately with military experts.

"This proposal goes to the SCND", Prime Minister Ciolacu explains, "If you want me to make a decision now, on the show, I can't. I am not a specialist. I am the Prime Minister of Romania, I have to listen, in an institutional framework, a secret one, because it is a decision regarding Romania's defence, and then we make the decision together.

It is not a discussion, in the first place, that it can become an electoral topic, because it would be a disaster and an incorrect approach towards our NATO partners. It is not a discussion to be made public. I know it is an interesting topic. I would create a breaking news, but I think we have reached the political maturity to avoid such things in matters so important, and we see this not only for Romania but for the whole of Europe.

This decision will certainly create breaking news, and all my questions are for the people. I am thinking about what interests them. It is known, and this one surely, yes, it is of maximum interest.

To live in security... It is certain... I am firmly convinced that the decision will not be such as to weaken Romania's security.”

What does Romania's defence system look like now?

In 2017, Romania signed a deal to obtain Patriot defence systems but so far have only one that is operation.

Ukraine needs 25 Patriots to protect the country from Russian attacks, says Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Their current focus is to secure at least seven to protect Ukraine's largest cities, according to Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba.

Patriots are a surface-to-air missile and anti-ballistic system considered one of the most sophisticated in the world. Their capacity to stop cruise missiles and short-range ballistics before they reach their intended target makes them so sought-after.

Watch more in the player above.

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