On Tuesday this week Her Majesty Margareta, Custodian of the Crown of Romania, and her husband Prince Radu, attended an event celebrating Romania’s war veterans. The event happened in the Marble Hall of the National Military Circle Palace in Romania’s capital of Bucharest.
Organised by the Romanian Ministry of National Defence and the Association ‘Together with Heroes’ the event ‘Together with Veterans’ wanted to honour the Romanian veterans of World War II who are still alive. Veterans from neighbouring Moldova also took part. A new book dedicated to veterans of World War II has also been launched that tells the stories to some of the people who survived the war and are still alive today.
At the moment there are registered 2,610 Romanian veterans from the second wold war that are still alive, and only eight from Moldavia are still living. The government will now hand over gifts to all the veterans in connection with this year’s Orthodox Easter celebration and as it was not possible to hold any official celebration due to the pandemic. On that occasion, Her Majesty Margareta and Prince Radu symbolically prepared two gift packages and wrote a card to the veterans. Gift packages contain traditional Romanian products, as well as the Romanian flag.
On April 29, the packages will be distributed in Romania and in the Republic of Moldova by teams consisting of the military, supported by volunteers, members of non-governmental associations and charity foundations. At the event at the Palace of the National Military Circle, war veterans were present, as well as representatives of state institutions, the Romanian army, personalities from the Romanian cultural area such as artists, economics and media.
Following the outbreak of World War II on 1 September 1939, the Kingdom of Romania under King Carol II officially adopted a position of neutrality. However, the rapidly changing situation in Europe during 1940. In the summer of 1940 a series of territorial disputes were diplomatically resolved unfavourably to Romania, resulting in the loss of most of the territory gained in the wake of World War I.
As a member of the Axis, Romania joined the invasion of the Soviet Union on 22 June 1941, providing equipment and oil to Nazi Germany as well as committing more troops to the Eastern Front than all the other allies of Germany combined. Romania was bombed by the Allies from 1943 onwards and invaded by advancing Soviet armies in 1944. King Michael of Romania led a coup d’état that deposed the Antonescu regime and put Romania on the side of the Allies for the remainder of the war.