An RAF Typhoon takes off from Romania (Picture: MOD).
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UK And Romania Agree To Strengthen Defence Ties

Direct cooperation on intelligence, military medicine, and health support services are part of the agreement.

An RAF Typhoon takes off from Romania (Picture: MOD).

An RAF Typhoon takes off from Romania (Picture: MOD).

The UK and Romania have agreed to strengthen defence links between the two countries. 

It comes as Romania's Defence Minister Gabriel Les met UK Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson in London to sign a memorandum of understanding.

The pair discussed issues of shared interest, including security in the Black Sea and Western Balkans, the Ministry of Defence said.

Mr Williamson first announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding in August last year while visiting RAF Typhoon's deployed to Romania as part of NATO's enhanced Air Policing (eAP) mission.

Around 150 British personnel were stationed at Constanța on Quick Reaction Alert, providing a "strong deterrent" to Russia according to one RAF officer.

Making the announcement on Wednesday, Mr Williamson said: "The deployment of RAF Typhoons to Romania last year – where our pilots policed Romanian territorial airspace – demonstrated the benefits of our vibrant defence relationship to European security.

"Today’s discussions underlined our two countries’ commitment to deepening that relationship for many years to come."

The MOD said the signed document confirms the two countries will aim to build a new industrials partnership to develop cutting edge defence capabilities.

Direct cooperation on defence intelligence, military medicine and health support services were also mentioned as part of the agreement. 

RAF Typhoon in Romania on NATO's enhanced Air Policing (eAP) mission.
RAF Typhoon in Romania on NATO's enhanced Air Policing (eAP) mission.

Direct cooperation on defence intelligence, military medicine and health support services were also mentioned as part of the agreement. 

The MOD also said the agreement provides a "strong foundation" for future cooperation in the Black Sea and Western Balkans.

It follows the deployment of survey ship HMS Echo to the Black Sea last year.

HMS Echo (Picture: MOD).
HMS Echo deployed to the Black Sea last year (Picture: MOD).

Former First Sea Lord, Lord West, warned that it was "not a clever idea" to send the ship amid increased tension between Ukraine and Russia.

Lord West said it would be better to deploy a Type 45 destroyer, which would be "able to look after itself".

Mr Williamson said HMS Echo's deployment sent a message to Russia.