WASHINGTON, October 15 (RIA Novosti) - The increase in NATO’s military presence in eastern Europe is the main obstacle in Russia-Romania relations, however, it is a reversible process, retired four-star general Constantin Degeratu, former head of the Romanian Armed Forces, told RIA Novosti Wednesday.
“The new kind of approach to security in the region is the main barrier for friendship between the countries,” Degeratu said, adding that “the reverse is very possible.”
“We are not very happy to do this, the NATO countries are not very happy to do this. It is not easy and needs sacrifice. And this is why there is hesitation,” he told RIA Novosti.
Relations between Russia and NATO have been strained since the alliance accused Russia of meddling in the Ukrainian conflict, a claim Russia has repeatedly denied.
Following Crimea's reunification with Russia in March, NATO stepped up its military presence near Russia's borders, specifically in Poland and the former Soviet Baltic states of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia. Russia has repeatedly expressed concern over NATO's increased military presence in its neighboring states.