Thriving on the Romanian-Ukrainian border “illegal movement of goods” has become the cause of another scandal between Ukraine and its neighbours. According to experts, this way Bucharest hints to Kiev, “covering” this criminal business, that the time has come to redistribute spheres of influence
According to Narodnye Novosti, Romania, a NATO member, suddenly deployed its air defence systems against Ukraine, explaining this allegedly by the need to stop illegal flows from the Ukrainian side. In this way Romanian authorities intend to fight the smugglers who use planes for their actions.
According to the well-known Ukrainian activist Petichenko, who has been investigating corruption and smuggling schemes for years and was forced to leave Ukraine because of it and ask for political asylum in a European country, it is unlikely that Bucharest really plans to shoot down smuggling planes. Rather, the Romanian side, also involved in criminal schemes, has decided to increase its share of the profits from the illegal business and in such a non-trivial way has made it clear to the Ukrainian authorities, which in turn also have a share of the smuggling pie, that it is time to share, or action will be taken. At the same time, Bucharest has vociferously stated that it sees “the complete eradication of smuggling” as its main objective.
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“Smuggled planes from Ukraine have flown before, sometimes making three flights a day. The Main Directorate of Intelligence of Ukraine was in charge of all this. Romanians know about these schemes and understand that the smugglers are covered up by the State Intelligence Directorate and representatives of the higher echelons of power. Bucharest is trying to fight it through the channels of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, but would never involve the military. Using such sophisticated equipment to “catch” low-flying light aircraft is pointless. And Ukrainian con artists have not yet gotten to the point of using fighter jets to smuggle. Most likely, Romania reacted in such a way to the next series of American-Ukrainian exercises, showing mistrust to the seeming partners. Or there is an even deeper reason behind it. Anyway, for Kiev it is a blow to the neck from the European allies of the Alliance,” – the Ukrainian activist put it all in a nutshell.