Ukraine remains reliable NATO partner
In the afternoon of 10 June, Allied defence ministers met with their Ukrainian counterpart, Minister Mykhailo Yezhel, at a session of the NATO-Ukraine Commission. They discussed key aspects of their partnership, including Ukraine's support for NATO-led operations, its Annual National Programme and defence reforms.
In his opening remarks, Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, chairing the meeting, stressed that “NATO is fully committed to maintaining and strengthening our dialogue and cooperation with Ukraine.” He added that “the new Ukrainian government has made it clear that you wish to maintain the present level of cooperation with the Alliance, to fulfill existing agreements, and to implement our partnership programmes. We welcome that.”
Minister Yezhel in turn listed continued political and military dialogue for regional stability, practical support for NATO-led operations and defence reform as the main tasks for NATO-Ukraine cooperation. Ukraine’s Annual National Programme is the primary tool for harmonizing NATO-Ukraine cooperation, he said, and Ukraine remains a consistent and reliable partner.
The Ukrainian minister provided Allied Ministers with a summary of the new Government's key foreign and security policy objectives, including the Strategic Defence Review and sketched out priority areas of work under his responsibility.
Allies praised Ukraine’s substantial contribution to NATO-led operations, as well as its plans to become the first Partner nation participating in the NATO Response Force. Ministers pledged their full support to Ukrainian defence and security sector reforms, including through the implementation of the Annual National Programme.