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Feb 25 2022

BLACK SEA NAVAL LEADERS, NATO CONVENE MARITIME FORUM IN BUCHAREST

BUCHAREST, Romania - The "1st Edition" of the Black Sea Maritime Forum took place in Bucharest 24-25 February, hosted and organized by Romanian Naval Forces in collaboration with the U.S. Naval Forces Europe and Allied Joint Force Command Naples, Italy.

Modeled after the Baltic Maritime Forum, held periodically in northern Europe, the leaders of Black Sea naval forces in Bulgaria, Georgia, Romania, Turkey, and Ukraine met and exchanged ideas with delegates from NATO navies and partner nations.

"The Black Sea Maritime Forum is a ground-breaking event and an initiative which has the potential to grow into a periodic forum. This event presents a unique opportunity to meet, network, and discuss regionally-focused security cooperation and coordination with Black Sea Heads of Navies, Coast Guards, and other related ministry representatives as well as with and VIP delegates of our strategic allies and partners," said Rear Admiral Mihai Panait, Chief of Romanian Naval Forces Staff.

In addition to many senior military speakers, the Forum saw panel discussions with academics and experts in Maritime Law, Maritime Safety and Transportation Security.

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Bucharest, Romania - (February 24, 2022) – Admiral Robert P. Burke, Commander, Allied Joint Force Headquarters, Naples and Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe and Africa (center), speaks with Black Sea naval leaders during the '1st Edition" of the Maritime Forum in Bucharest February 24. Modeled after the Baltic Maritime Forum, leaders of Black Sea Naval forces in Bulgaria, Georgia, Romania, Turkey and Ukraine met and exchanged ideas with delegates from NATO navies and partner nations. (Courtesy photo)

"I am grateful that senior leaders of the Black Sea region navies gathered together to make this a powerful cooperative forum for peace and security. The Black Sea is a critical waterway for commerce and connectedness throughout Eurasia. 

The sea services of NATO Allies and partners are committed to maintaining free use of international waters of the Black Sea. We face new challenges in the maritime on a scale not seen for decades.We know from experience that day-to-day competition takes place predominantly in the maritime – on the high seas and in international airspace, and in the approaches to territorial waters – where our broad network of like-minded Allies and partners operate safely and in accordance with our shared values and international norms," said Admiral Robert P. Burke, Commander, Allied Joint Force Headquarters, Naples and Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe and Africa.

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Bucharest, Romania - (February 24, 2022) – Allied and partner nation Black Sea naval leaders deliberate and discuss regionally-focused security cooperation and coordination during the '1st Edition" of the Maritime Forum in Bucharest February 24. Modeled after the Baltic Maritime Forum, leaders of Black Sea Naval forces in Bulgaria, Georgia, Romania, Turkey and Ukraine met and exchanged ideas with delegates from NATO navies and partner nations. (Courtesy photo)

Burke explains the importance of Maritime Security today.

"We planned this forum months ago, but today we see Russia's unprovoked attack on Ukraine. Russia's aggression has only focused our attention on the importance of NATO's credible, combat-capable maritime forces and the unmatched deterrence value they perform. The events of today validate that this forum has an even more critical role to play in stimulating thought, driving action, and raising awareness, as we work as a team to ensure a credible, capable and continuously ready maritime force to ensure our collective defense," said Burke.


Story by JFC Naples Public Affairs Office

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