NATO Secretary General: we must ensure Ukraine can defend itself now and in the future

  • 15 Jun. 2023 -
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  • Last updated: 15 Jun. 2023 20:03

Opening a meeting of the NATO-Ukraine Commission on Thursday (15 June 2023), Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that Allies must continue to increase the delivery of military equipment to Ukraine as it fights to regain territory from Russian occupying forces. NATO Defence Ministers were joined by their Ukrainian counterpart Oleksii Reznikov, as well as Swedish Defence Minister Pål Jonson and EU High Representative Josep Borrell.

Left to right: NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg with Oleksii Reznikov (Minister of Defence, Ukraine) and Lloyd J. Austin III (US Secretary of Defense)

The Commission addressed further steps to be taken at the Vilnius Summit to support Ukraine, “including a multi-year package of support with substantial funding” to ensure that “Ukraine can defend itself now and in the future,” said Mr Stoltenberg. On Ukraine’s membership aspirations, the Secretary General reaffirmed that “Ukraine’s future lies within the Euro-Atlantic family,” and that “all Allies agree that it will become a member of the Alliance”.

Meeting the press earlier on Thursday, Mr Stoltenberg praised the “the courage, the bravery, the skills of the Ukrainian soldiers” as they pursue their counteroffensive, adding that their gains demonstrate that Allies’ support “actually makes a difference on the battlefield as we speak.”