Presidents exchange rhetoric on common goals

  • 2001-11-29
  • BNS
RIGA - Latvian President Vaira Vike-Freiberga and her Romanian counterpart Ion Iliescu spoke in Riga on Nov. 27 of those common foreign policy interests shared by both countries - EU and NATO accession.

At a dinner held in honor of her guest, Vike-Freiberga said that their countries are linked by "stable future prospects in a united Europe." And the present is also shared, together with "the will to defend the values we have regained: freedom, democracy, basic human rights, and a market economy."

Vike-Freiberga acknowledged that both countries are cooperating closely under the Vilnius Ten group of NATO candidates.

"We consider that this is a successful format for enlargement. By cooperating, the countries in this group are serious participants on the international level, able to give a joint contribution to security and stability," she said.

She added, addressing Iliescu, that she is "sure that in the not-too-distant future we will be equal partners in the European and Trans-Atlantic organizations."

The Romanian president emphasized the efforts of both countries "to successfully change the weight of the past into hope for our citizens in a very short time."

Iliescu also spoke of the common will to join NATO. "The non-stop efforts of our countries to be ready in the political, economic and administrative spheres, especially by modernizing our military capabilities, give strong argument for a positive decision at NATO's Prague summit in 2002," he said.

The Romanian president was in Latvia on Nov. 27 and 28.