“As for the trip to Romania [of Portuguese soldiers] the preparation process is currently underway, there are already Portuguese soldiers in Romania to work with the Romanian soldiers, to deal with logistical issues, and the company [of 174 soldiers] will continue in the next few weeks, end of March, beginning of April”, stated João Gomes Cravinho.

These soldiers, underlined the minister, “will be stationed in southern Romania and therefore are not immediately close to the border with Ukraine”, exercising, however, “a very important role in strengthening NATO's deterrence capacity”.

Asked about the opinions he heard from deputies at this meeting, Gomes Cravinho said he felt “a great support, a great convergence, from the left to the right around what the Government’s position has been” in the context of the conflict between Ukraine and Russia.

“For two hours I did not receive any criticism of the positions taken by the Portuguese government. It is very satisfying to know that in a democratic country as diverse as ours, we know how to be united when essential issues are at stake,” he said.