The Romanian Ministry of Defense wants to get a legal authorization to dispose of “hostile” civilian drones that endanger military objects, the newspaper Adevarul said in its Thursday issue. The draft presented by the paper would amend Act 2011/122, which regulates the use of weapons by the army, so that soldiers could open fire on drones that endanger protected objects. An important element of the legislative amendment is the introduction of the concept of drone, which, according to the draft, means any automatic or remote-controlled device that travels by air, land, water or underwater.
The explanatory memorandum refers primarily to the proliferation of remote-controlled small aircraft. According to the draft, commercially available civilian drones are increasingly endangering the security of military, governmental and industrial facilities, as well as mass events, as they are also capable of transporting explosives, enemy reconnaissance operations through cameras and other sensors, and intercepting and disrupting military communication channels. According to the Ministry of Defense, the detection, identification, tracking and disposal of potentially threatening drones are currently difficult, mainly due to the lack of a legal basis and appropriate technical means.
The amendment to the law, which is intended to close the legal gap, basically makes it possible to shoot or seize enemy drones. If accepted, it authorizes soldiers to fire on drones until they are stopped or immobilized. However, the legislation justifies that soldiers want to use “proportionate coercive and restrictive force” to dispose of drones, i.e. they do not necessarily want to open fire on them, in most cases electronic interference or a targeted high-power microwave energy beam may be sufficient. The draft law of the Ministry of Defense, which has been submitted for public discussion, may be submitted for ten days and amendments may be submitted.