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Ukraine And European Security - International Mechanisms
As Non-Military Options For National Security Of Ukraine.
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Chapter 4. "Evolutionary" Approach" - Ukraine And European International Establishments.
Section 4. Ukraine and NATO.
4.2. Ukraine and NATO: from Cooperation to the PFP Individual Program.
Ukraine has started its cooperation with the NATO in March 1992, by joining then newly-established North Atlantic Cooperation Council (NACC). It was recognized as particular advantge in "the process of both redefining the NATO for the future and for coming closer to the creation of mechanisms for a new security system."(290) Since then, Ukraine has actively participated in all its various forums.
The esteem of the NACC contribution to European stability as a whole, and to Ukrainian security in particular, has always been understood in Kiev, foremost as a link to political and military cooperation within the NATO Alliance. At the same time, the future of this establishment has been behold in close inter-action with the CSCE, and greater involvement in peacekeeping and conflict resolution activities.(291)
The next step towards closer cooperative relations with the Alliance was made on February 8, 1994, when Ukrainian Foreign Minister Anatoly Zlenko signed a framework document of the Partnership For Peace Program (PFP).(292)
Ukraine's entry of the Partnership for Peace Program has followed a period of Ukraine's previous aspirations to joint the Alliance at the earliest possiple timing, prevailing at the begining stages of Ukraine's independence and also preceeded country's active paricipation in the NACC activities. All these factors have resulted in more realistic perception of the Alliance's current main tasks and possibilities. As one can also consider, unlike some Central European leaders, Ukrainian leadership percepted rather the possibilities, offered by the PFP, than some limits presented by this program, e.g. admittance to the NATO alliance, granting special security guarantees, etc.(293)
In addition, the notion of the PFP has compatibly coincided with Ukraine's vision of contemporary regional security, which assumes European security based on "collective security zones' in sub-regions of Central and Eastern Europe, and foremost as "a prompt putting into practice ideas and scientific approaches coordinated with independent states".(294)
While extending cooperation with NATO in the military field, including joint training and exercises, this program provided Ukraine with opportunity to increase an arrangement of other aspects of its defence planning and the development of a more integrated common approach, which in time should enhance Ukraine's ability to integrate more effectively in multi-national operations with Alliance forces.
Through the issue of security guarantees has been a notable element in Ukraine's policy, Partnership for Peace also approached for Kiev a possibility to consult with the Alliance, if Ukraine perceives a direct threat to its territorial integrity or political independence.(295) This clause of the PFP program has been considered in Ukraine as the "additional security assuarances"(296) and the new program of cooperation has met overwhelming support among country's leadership, military commanding staff and population.
As early as in September 1994, Ukraine implemented its first participation in a PFP joint training by taking part in combined execises "Cooperation Bridge" in Poland.(297) Later on, Ukrainian air-mobile unit participated in similar traning "Spirit of Partnership", held in Holland.(298)
In 1995 Ukraine has hosted PFP exercises on its territory: Joint US-Ukrainian exercise "PeaceShield" on Yavoriv test site near Lvov city between 23-27 May 1995.(299) In general, during 1995 Ukrainian leadership planned to take part in 10 PFP exercises. Through following 1996 Ukraine would obtain around US $10 mln. out of $ 100 US mln. requested by President Clinton from the US Congress for PFP for the next year.(300)
While vigorously participating in the North Athlantic Cooperation Council and Partnership for Peace, Kiev has not diminished the importance of subsequent ways to strengthen its cooperation with Alliance and activated its external activities for obtaining more prerogatives from NATO.
This account became even more significant during the winter of 1994-1995, which brought many contradictions between Russia and the West over the question of further NATO development.
Ukrainian concerns were addressed at the spring 1995 ministerial session of the NACC in Noordwijk. Following, corresponding Ukrainian intentions and considering the fact, that besides serious implications for Russian security, NATO enlargement would seriously limit Ukraine's freedom of manuever in its policies as a neutral state, in July 1995 Ukraine was been offered an individual program within the Partnership for Peace (IPP).(301)
Unlike in Russia, where a granted status within PFP has met no great responce among majority of politicians, Kiev admired this event as one of the greatest successes in its foreign policy during 1995.(302) And algthough, Ukraine has not gained desired "special" status, indentical to that obtained by Russia on May 31, 1995 it was mentioned by NATO leaders that in broader outlook the program of individual relationship would take the form of an all-encompassing treaty or standing commission.(303)
Later on, the North Athlantic Council met with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Hennady Udovenko at NATO headquarters in Brussells on 14 September, 1995. The NACC welcomed the acceptance of the IPP by Ukraine and as former NATO Secretary General Viily Claes told at the Press-Conference, followed by the meeting of the Council, Ukraine would play, a specific role in developing a new security architecture in Europe.(304)
Algthough, the official statements are always linked to some degree of zealosity, there are no doubts, that Ukrainian relations with NATO have turned a new stage of progression and restrained relations with Russia made the West view Russian-Ukrainian disputes as a one of possible source of instability in Eastern Europe. The IPP is perhaps, most evident success of NATO Allied policy towards Ukraine through given Kiev a possibility for internationalizing the solution of its security problems on the level similar to Russia.