U.S. To Take Control Of Military Base In Romania




 
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December 9th, 2006  
Team Infidel
 
 

Topic: U.S. To Take Control Of Military Base In Romania


Arizona Daily Star (Tucson)
December 9, 2006
By Associated Press
CONSTANTA, Romania The United States will take over a Romanian air base near the Black Sea, with up to 1,500 American troops expected to begin training there starting in April, officials said Friday.
The U.S. government will spend $34 million to upgrade the Mihail Kogalniceanu base, said Col. John Ingham, who heads the Office for Defense Cooperation at the U.S. Embassy. The base will have upgraded barracks, recreation areas, offices and a clinic, he said.
Human Rights Watch has singled out the Romanian base as a possible location of a clandestine CIA jail, but Romania has repeatedly denied involvement.
Ioan Talpes, who previously headed Romania's Foreign Intelligence Service and was later an adviser to former President Ion Iliescu, has told European Parliament lawmakers that Romanian authorities were forbidden access to military parts of the Mihail Kogalniceanu base as part of a previous 2002-03 agreement with Washington.
U.S. troops, mainly Army and Air Force servicemen stationed in Germany but also U.S.-based troops, will be deployed at the base for training at nearby weapons ranges. About 14 to 18 fighter planes will also be stationed at Kogalniceanu.
Ingham and representatives of the Alabama National Guard visited health facilities in the nearby port city of Constanta, including an orphanage for HIV-positive children. The Alabama Guard, which trained in Romania last year, made a $3,000 donation to the orphanage, which cares for about a dozen children at any time.
In December, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Romanian Foreign Minister Mihai Razvan Ungureanu signed a 10-year agreement to set up military bases in Romania.
 


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