News / Europe

Romania's Basescu Slams EU for Soft Putin Stance

FILE - Romania's President Traian Basescu in Bucharest, June 25, 2014.
FILE - Romania's President Traian Basescu in Bucharest, June 25, 2014.
Reuters

Romania's President Traian Basescu on Monday accused the European Union of being weak and too slow in imposing sanctions on Russia to deter it from encroaching further into Europe after its annexation of Ukraine's Crimea.

An ex-communist state on the Black Sea, Romania joined the EU in 2007 and has been among the most vehement advocates of Western sanctions against Moscow after neighboring Ukraine lost control of its peninsula and some of its eastern territories.

"We're now facing a reality because we didn't discourage Putin, because in Eastern Europe there's a conflict fueled by the Russian Federation, with military equipment, politically, with personnel, so that 192 Dutch citizens died on Monday," Basescu told a news briefing.

He was refering to the downing of a Malaysian airliner with nearly 300 people on board in separatist-held territory in Ukraine last week. One of the victims was a Romanian.

Basescu said it was a mistake to handle sanctions against Russia "with kid gloves".

The more delay in implementing them the higher the price will be paid to stop Putin's plans to rebuild the former Soviet Union's empire, he said.

Romania has said NATO must reposition its resources in the wake of Moscow's maneuvers and plans a gradual increase in its defense budget over the next two years.

It is especially concerned that Moldova, a small state bordering Romania with a Russian-speaking minority - could be next in Moscow's sights given the risk of separatist unrest there.

Basescu attributed the EU's stance towards Russia to various economic interests by member states: "There's always an argument: one country has a big investment, other has to deliver sophisticated equipment, another is natural gas dependant."

"Today is Ukraine, then the Baltics borders are reached, then Poland and then Romania," he said. "Aren't we at risk by making economic considerations weigh more than solidarity with states in the EU's eastern flank?"

You May Like

Multimedia Social Media Documenting, Not Driving, Hong Kong Protests

Unlike in Arab Spring uprisings, pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong aren't relying on Twitter and Facebook to organize, but social media still plays a role More

Analysis: Occupy Central Not Exactly Hong Kong’s Tiananmen

VOA's former Hong Kong, Beijing correspondent compares and contrasts 1989 Tiananmen Square protest with what is now happening in Hong Kong More

Bambari Hospital a Lone Place of Help in Violence-Plagued CAR

Only establishment still functioning in CAR's second city is main hospital More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Boris Ionut from: Bucharest, Romania
July 22, 2014 8:37 PM
Maybe Mr. Basescu remembers Hitler ascension better than his european colleagues. First Czechoslovakia than we'll see...


by: Goyisher_Kop from: Buhusi
July 22, 2014 5:09 PM
Basescu is a nationalist Romanian politician. He has a fixation with Russia and the unification of Moldova and Romania.

Russia poses no real threat to Romania. However, it poses a threat to the territorial integrity of Moldova, a Romanian state.

Russia is inimical to Romania as it is inimical to all Eastern European countries who joined NATO and are faithful allies to the USA. Russia exerts a subversive influence in Romania, true. However, for Russia, Romania must represent small stuff.

Ponta (Romania's PM) seems to be less pro-American and anti-Russian than Basescu.
He will compete with Klaus Iohannis, a Romanian German and most likely the opposition's candidate, for the presidency of Romania this autumn. I suspect that Iohannis, being German, is even less anti-Russian than Ponta, a Romanian Romanian. (In fact Ponta has Vlachs origins. Even Basescu doesn't seem to be 100% Romanian. He has the squinted eyes of Putin. Tatar blood? Tatars live in the Dobrogea region from where he comes.)

So, this staunch anti-Russian attitude of Romania could become history after the end of Basescu's term this autumn.



by: Magy from: Romania
July 22, 2014 5:15 AM
Hard to believe this are his words, because few months ago, when the prime minister tried to say something about Russia being too aggressive, Basescu said his job is not to talk like this, but better he should search cheap gas. So, when did he spoke the truth, then or now? I guess he is going where the wind blows.. trying hard to impress the west...


by: 1worldnow from: Earth
July 22, 2014 12:48 AM
Maybe Basescu hasn't been a shining light for the troubles in Romania, but he makes a valid point. He knows that the EU and UN are weak. And the leader of the free-world (Obama) is simply a talker, not a man of action!!!!!


by: Not Again from: Canada
July 21, 2014 11:06 PM
The Romanian Pres has the clear wiew of the situation; given that his country is next to Ukraine, his view is very clear and his sit is far more risky; and given that Romania was under the Soviet fist, he understands the bad situation Ukraine finds itself in. And obviosly he does not have the inside track, to Putin, that the German chancellor has, and thus she looks the other way, Westwards, to more normal sights, like France, and even the Netherlands, rather than confront the reality turning more ugly by the day in the East.
Will see how many more innocent lives will it take, to see Germany, France, the Netherlands separate themselves from their money and investments on the other side of Europe = Russia; and join the US/Canada/Britain/Australia in the search for justice and peace; appeasement does not work, it only emboldens agressors.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plainsi
X
October 01, 2014 10:45 AM
It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plains

It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests Draw New Supporters on National Holiday

On the 65th anniversary of the founding of Communist China, Hong Kong protesters are hoping to stage the largest pro-democracy demonstration since the 1989 Tiananmen protests. VOA's Brian Padden visited one of the protest sites mid-day, when the atmosphere was calm and where the supporters were enthusiastic about joining what they are calling the umbrella revolution.
Video

Video India's PM Continues First US Visit

India's prime minister is on his first visit to Washington, to strengthen political and economic ties between the world's oldest and the world biggest democracies. He came to the U.S. capital from New York, the first stop on his five-day visit to the country that denied him an entry visa in the past. From Washington, Zlatica Hoke reports Modi seemed most focused on attracting foreign investment and trade to increase job opportunities for his people.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid