Moldovan Soldiers Join KFOR Mission in Kosovo (VIDEO)
Chisinau, March 8, 2014 — The National Army contingent departed for Kosovo, today, within a deployment ceremony held at the Chisinau International Airport.
The event brought together leadership of the country, representatives of the civil and military diplomatic corps, as well as families of the officers and non-commissioned officers deployed to KFOR Mission.
The President of the Republic of Moldova, Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, Nicolae Timofti, stated that this is the first participation of a Moldovan military contingent at a NATO-led mission.
The Peacekeeping Mission in Kosovo, conducted in compliance with the 1224 resolution of the UN Security Council, represents a test of Republic of Moldova’s committment to responsibilities assumed within the international organizations. Following the neutrality status of the country, the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova decided to join representatives of other 31 nations of the European Union, NATO and partner states and contribute Moldovan troops to peace rehabilitation mission in Kosovo“, the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces said.
According to Deputy Chief of US Mission in Republic of Moldova, Kara McDonald, the deployment of 41 soldiers will give the National Army a significant experience. This will help Moldovan Armed Forces improve their capabilities and enhance interoperability with other nations.
“The contribution of Moldova to this mission demonstrates the fact that Moldova is internationally recognized as a capable and qualified actor for multinational peacekeeping missions. A well-trained army that is ready for the mission is a reason of pride for Moldovan citizens”, Kara McDonald pointed out.
The Italian Ambassador to Chisinau, Erico Nunziata, stated that Italy appreciates the Moldovan Government’s availability to participae at the Multinational Battle Group — West. “The deployment of an infantry platoon and an EOD team within the Task Force of the Italian KFOR Mission proves the fact that Moldova preserves its neutrality status, according to the Constitution, and, at the same time, wishes to be an active actor at the international level, in cooperation with NATO structures. Italy is honored to support the Moldovan contingent, that is definitely well-trained for the peacekeeping operation in Kosovo”, Erico Nunziata said.
Deputy Minister of Defense, Igor Panfile, thanked the partner countries on behalf of servicemembers departing for Kosovo and those who stay at home, in the barracks, that are also ready for service — for their contribution to the achievement of the strategic objective to place the National Army of the Republic of Moldova in the rank of professional troops participating at peacekeeping operations.
“My thanks to the Italian and US Government for the support provided in logistics and transportation of the Moldovan contingent to the theater of operations. I would also like to thank Moldova’s citizens who trust the Army and I assure them that the Moldovan servicemembers, standard-bearers of the nation, will do their service with honor, far away from the Motherland”, Igor Panfile stated.
The military contingent, that departed today for Kosovo from Chisinau International Airport, by a C-130 HERCULES military aircraft, consists of 41 servicemembers. 33 of them will carry out security, guard and patrol missions. The contingent also has 7 EOD engineers and a staff officer.
In Kosovo, the Moldovan servicemembers will carry out joint missions with the Italian military contingent, under the Multinational Battle Group-West.
The Parliament of Republic of Moldova approved the deployment of Moldovan troops to Kosovo on November 1, 2013.