Residents of several Romanian villages received warnings to urgently take shelter from falling attack debris and are being provided air-raid bunkers as Russia’s attacks against Ukraine come right up against NATO’s border.
Romania’s Ministry of Defence woke locals living in several villages along the Ukrainian borders in the early hours of Wednesday morning with text messages warning them to take precautions against “falling objects from the surrounding airspace”.
The messages said, in a translation offered by the BBC, that residents should: “Keep calm! Take shelter in basements or in civil protection shelters.”
“In the absence of a shelter, stay inside the house, away from the windows and exterior walls,” it continues, as Russia launched explosive drones against Ukraine’s Danube ports. The strategically important civilian infrastructure lies just over the Danube River from Romania, meaning the drones were presumably programmed to land and explode just yards from the territory of a NATO member state.
The messages were sent just days after the Romanian National Committee for Emergency Situations approved the text message system for use in the region for defence against falling Ukraine war debris.
The danger is not theoretical: Romania says debris including “Russian drone parts” has landed on their territory several times in recent weeks. Presumably wishing not to escalate tensions, NATO has said it will not treat drone debris resulting from Russian strikes against Ukraine, no matter how close to an alliance member’s territory, as a deliberate attack on NATO.
Romania itself has summoned the Russian ambassador this week and told the nation the incursions into their airspace of drones — even if they are falling wreckage — are unacceptable.
Nevertheless, Romania is being proactive in protecting its own citizens from the spillover from the Ukraine war and is erecting a series of bomb shelters in border communities. The Romanian Prime Minister has stated, with regret, that the shelters are not as “aesthetically pleasing” as they could be, because they are being built in a hurry.
A Romanian mayor speaking to France24 said locals had complained for some while of war debris landing in the area, but “weren’t believed” until combat drone parts were found. He said he was concerned about the possibility of parts landing on someone’s home.
A local resident underlined just how close the air battles were to where he lived, telling the broadcaster of the fighting on his doorstep: “When the Ukrainian air defences fire the bullets come from over there. You hear the drones coming, when they fall there’s disaster, shaking, like an earthquake.”
Breitbart has previously reported on the arrival of the war on the very edge of NATO’s border, with Romanian soldiers said to have been just 220 yards from blasts across the border in August.
Appetite For Risk: Russia Now Conducting Strikes Just 200 Yards From NATO’s Eastern Frontier https://t.co/vF9PXpxvZn
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) August 4, 2023