with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg by Deutsche Welle journalist Sarah Kelly at the Koerber Stiftung’s annual Berlin Foreign Policy Forum

  • 18 Oct. 2022 -
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  • Last updated: 19 Oct. 2022 10:46

(As delivered)

Moderator: Dear guests, those of you who know the Berlin Foreign Policy Forum know that we're in for another highlight, another session of DW's Conflict Zone hosted by Sarah Kelly. And since it is not possible to speak about any question about European or global security without talking about, or in this case rather with, NATO, she will be joined, or already is joined virtually, by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. Sarah, over to you.

Sarah Kelly (Deutsche Welle): Thank you so much. Thank you so much. Secretary General Stoltenberg, welcome to Conflict Zone.

NATO Secretary General: Thank you so much for having me, Sarah.

Sarah Kelly: In the past week, Ukrainian cities far from the front lines, including the capital Kyiv, have been waking up to deadly Russian airstrikes, which appear to be targeting infrastructure in civilian areas. What do you think Putin aims to achieve with these strikes?

NATO Secretary General: I think the aim is to reduce the determination of the Ukrainian people to stand up against the brutal Russian invasion of their country. But I think he will fail, as he has failed in all the other attempts in trying to take control over Ukraine since the invasion in February. And this demonstrates the brutality of the war, it demonstrates how we see civilian casualties and how also critical civilian infrastructure is attacked. And it just also highlights the importance of NATO and NATO Allies and partners, that we continue to provide support to Ukraine.

Sarah Kelly: And to that end, last week NATO members committed to send more air defence systems and other aid to Ukraine. Do you think the new systems will be enough to stop the onslaught of Russian attacks with long-range weapons, including drones?

NATO Secretary General: I think that the systems we are now providing are making a huge difference. They have already made a difference in shooting down a lot of the Russian missiles, drones, but also will make even more difference in the future. Because Allies are now stepping up. We have Germany who has just delivered a new very advanced modern air defence systems. And during the NATO defence ministerial last week, we had several Allies, the United States and also others, announcing more systems, but also more ammunition and supplies to existing systems. And this is making a difference: the Ukrainians are able to shoot down many of the incoming missiles and drones.

Sarah Kelly: You say that they'll make a difference in the future, what does the future mean to you? Because President Zelenskyy says 30% of Ukraine's power stations have been destroyed in these attacks. The concern is, winter is quickly approaching; people could struggle to heat their homes. How quickly can the systems get there, especially given... and you've admitted this, there are production shortages in the West?

NATO Secretary General: Well, the systems NATO Allies and partners have delivered have already made a huge difference. This is one of the reasons why Russia has not been able to gain air superiority, control over the airspace over Ukraine. And that has been a big disadvantage for the Russian troops throughout the operation. They expected that they were going to take control over the airspace; they have not been able to take control of the airspace over Ukraine. This is of course, first and foremost, because of the skills, the determination, of the Ukrainian armed forces using the air defence systems they already had, old Soviet types of air defence. What NATO Allies have done is that we have provided ammunition to those old systems and then we are also bringing in new systems. And the latest example is the German system, demonstrating that Germany is now actually delivering important capabilities to Ukraine and they will make then even more difference in the future. Winter is coming and that was also the main message from the defence ministerial, so we need to ramp up support also, everything from winter clothing, generators, tents, so we can help and ensure that Ukrainians can operate throughout the winter.

Sarah Kelly: Let's talk a little bit more about the urgency for action and I'd like to turn to the battlefield now. Ukraine, as we all know, has been recapturing territory on the frontlines, in the east and in the south, but there are some reports, including today, that troops in the Donbas region have slowed almost to a halt. Russian reinforcements meantime have rushed the frontline, attempting to break Ukraine's momentum. How critical do you see this moment right now, not in the future, right now, for Ukraine's counter offensive, as the colder months settle in?

NATO Secretary General: So wars are, by nature, unpredictable. And of course there are still a lot of Russian forces, capabilities in Ukraine and they have... What we have seen over the last weeks and days is actually the most serious escalation of the conflict since the invasion in February. Because if you put together their mobilisation and the forces they are now able to send to the front, with the partial... with the illegal annexation of Ukrainian territory and the dangerous nuclear rhetoric, all of that represents the biggest escalation since the war. So again, we need to just step up our support and, of course, this support has proven extremely important because this has enabled the Ukrainians to first push the Russians out of the area around Kyiv and then halt the Russian offensive in Donbas, and then launch a counter offensive, where they have been able to regain and retake a lot of territory in Donbas and also push against the Russian forces in the south, in Kherson. But since we still see significant Russian presence, we need to make sure that we provide support for the long haul, as much as this takes, for as long as it takes.

Sarah Kelly: The Ukrainians say they need more tanks in order to push forward. We're sitting here today, we're speaking from the Berlin Foreign Policy Forum. Germany, a NATO member, is facing criticism for not sending heavier military equipment to Ukraine, including Leopard 2 battle tanks. From your point of view, should Germany provide the tanks to Ukraine now?

NATO Secretary General: So, Germany has provided, and is providing, a lot of essential equipment to Ukraine, with advanced air defence systems and other advanced weapons, and also ammunition and artillery. Other Allies have provided similar types of support. And all Allies have also provided armoured vehicles and also a lot of extremely important different types of support to the Ukrainians. We...

Sarah Kelly: But Mr Secretary General, I would just like to underscore the urgency that we have been hearing, and I'd like to mention a quote for example, from Latvia's Defence Minister, and I'm going to read it out to you now. He says, "If Germany would give to Ukraine proportionately what we have given to Ukraine, this war would be over". Does Germany and other larger EU states need to do more now?

NATO Secretary General: We all need to do more now. And that was the message from the Defence Ministers when they met last week. And we also saw significant new announcements about more supplies. Then we have to realise that, so far, what we have done is to mostly provide supplies or support to Ukraine by depleting our existing stocks. At some stage, we cannot continue to do so. So now we need also to ramp up production. And that was also the other message from the NATO Defence Ministers, was that we now engage directly with the industry to be able to replenish our existing stocks of ammunitions, of capabilities, so we can both uphold our own deterrence and defence, but also continue to provide support to Ukraine.

Sarah Kelly: I want to talk a little bit more about the ramp up of production and the fact of that as a whole right now. But first, Putin says that he will use, and I'm quoting here, "All weapon systems available to defend territory". This is being seen as a thinly veiled nuclear threat. This week, NATO is conducting routine nuclear drills. Russia's annual exercises are usually taking place late in October. How high is your concern right now that the Russian drills could be used to put nuclear weapons on high alert?

NATO Secretary General: We are very closely monitoring what they are doing and we are vigilant and, of course, especially when they now are going to conduct a nuclear exercise. Having said that, the risk of any nuclear attack against Ukraine, or use of nuclear weapons against Ukraine, is low. But of course, the potential impact, the consequence, is so big, so this is a risk we have to take seriously. And we do so by conveying clearly to Russia that there'll be severe consequences for Russia if they use a nuclear weapon in Ukraine. And also reminding Russia that a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought, and we of course stay vigilant and monitor closely what they do. So far, we haven't seen any changes in their nuclear posture, in their nuclear readiness, but this is something we constantly monitor and especially when they now conduct a nuclear exercise.

Sarah Kelly: But given the attack on the Kerch Strait Bridge in occupied Crimea, in early October, and Ukraine's recent retaking of territory in the country's south and east, do you think personally that a humiliated Putin is more likely to lash out at this time?

NATO Secretary General: I will be careful speculating about the different risks and the different scenarios. We need to be prepared for all eventualities and that's exactly what we are. And, at the same time, we cannot be intimidated or suffer or accept blackmailing from Russia, because I think that this nuclear rhetoric and the threats we have seen from Russia, the aim is of course to coerce us, to blackmail us to stop providing support to Ukraine. But if we do that, then President Putin will win in Ukraine. And if he wins in Ukraine, that will send a very dangerous message to all authoritarian leaders, that when they use military force in a brutal way, violate international law, they will achieve their goals. That will make us more vulnerable, it will make the world more dangerous. And therefore, yes, there are risks with all options in this conflict, but I think the risk of letting President Putin win is much higher than to continue to support Ukraine as we do.

Sarah Kelly: You and NATO members, you have emphasised and I'm quoting here, "Russia must understand that nuclear war can never be won and must never be fought". Do you have any assurances that that message is being heard by Putin?

NATO Secretary General: Yes, partly because it has been communicated so many times, from NATO Allies, from also the United States and other NATO Allies that possess nuclear weapons, and from the whole Alliance. And actually, this is also something that Russia has subscribed to. So, this is a well known message. But of course, we have to make it, we have to repeat that message because the nuclear rhetoric coming from Moscow, from President Putin is dangerous, is reckless. And if we have to take this threat seriously, even though the risk, the likelihood of an attack is low, the impact is so big, so the risk is something we have to take seriously.

Sarah Kelly: You've warned of severe consequences; such as?

NATO Secretary General: We will never go into the exact way we will respond, partly because that will depend so much on the kind of attack, the circumstances, the context, but also because we will never give a potential adversary the privilege of knowing exactly how we will respond. They know it will be severe consequences and we have repeated that message several times over the last weeks.

Sarah Kelly: But do all 30 NATO Allies agree on what the response would be?

NATO Secretary General: All NATO Allies agree on the seriousness of any use of nuclear weapons, and this has been clearly conveyed from me and from also many other NATO Allies. Second, I think we need to distinguish between use of weapons of mass destruction, or a nuclear weapon, in Ukraine, and any attack on a NATO Ally. An attack on a NATO Ally will of course, trigger Article 5, our collective defence clause. And to ensure that there is no room for miscalculation, for misunderstanding, in Moscow about that, we have increased our military presence in the eastern part of the Alliance, increased the readiness of our forces, to make sure that an attack on a NATO Ally will, of course, trigger a response from the whole Alliance. And we do that not to provoke a conflict, but to prevent a conflict, to preserve peace. And that's fundamentally the same as NATO has done for more than 70 years, faced a nuclear threat or a challenge from the Soviet Union and Russia.

Sarah Kelly: Here's the response from Moscow: Putin's ally, Dmitry Medvedev, says that he thinks the NATO military alliance would not risk a nuclear war and directly enter the Ukraine war, even if Moscow struck Ukraine with nuclear weapons – is he right?

NATO Secretary General: He is not right, because what we have stated clearly is that there will be severe consequences, but we have not lined out or gone into details what kind of consequences there will be, and of course we have many ways to respond. And that's exactly what we have communicated.

Sarah Kelly: While you warn, though, Moscow of severe consequences, French President Emmanuel Macron says that French... "A French nuclear response to Russia, using its own atomic arsenal against Ukraine or the region, is off the table". That statement wasn't very helpful for your deterrence, was it?

NATO Secretary General: But we have different ways of reacting; it doesn't have to be any use of nuclear weapons. What we have stated, again and again, is that the circumstances in which NATO would consider the use of a nuclear weapon remains very remote. But that doesn't take away the possibility of NATO to respond, NATO Allies to respond, if there is a use of nuclear weapon by Russia against Ukraine. And again, if there is any attack against a NATO Ally, we have the whole Alliance and Article 5 and our collective defence clause, and the purpose of that is to prevent that from happening.

Sarah Kelly: Russia says that western state support of Ukraine – you've mentioned what NATO members are sending to Ukraine – help make them a direct party to the conflict. With NATO members supplying the majority of support, isn't it going to be difficult for members to not be seen as a direct party?

NATO Secretary General: No, because we are not party to the conflict, meaning that that we don't have forces on the ground, we don't participate in the fighting. But what we do is that we provide support to Ukraine. Ukraine has the right for self defence. This is a right which is enshrined in the UN Treaty. Every nation has the right to defend themselves against a war of aggression, a brutal attack, as we have seen against Ukraine. And NATO Allies are helping Ukraine to uphold that right for self defence, but that doesn't make us party to the conflict.

Sarah Kelly: I'd like to ask you about NATO enlargement, and in particular, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy announced a bid for fast track membership of NATO. He pointed to the examples of Finland and Sweden. Will you agree to fast track NATO's bid in the next 12 months?

NATO Secretary General: It's nothing new that Ukraine has the ambition of joining NATO. NATO's position remains unchanged. NATO's door is open, we have demonstrated that over the last years with the North Macedonia, Montenegro, but also with Finland and Sweden. And of course, we also strongly convey the message that every nation has the right to choose its own path, including of course Ukraine. At the end of the day, it will be for the 30 NATO Allies and Ukraine to decide on membership. Russia doesn't have any say in in that. Our main focus now is on ensuring that Ukraine wins the war and, therefore, all our focus is on providing support to Ukraine.

Sarah Kelly: But the question is, do you personally support Ukraine's application for fast track membership?

NATO Secretary General: I personally stand by the decisions we have made, which is on saying that NATO's door remains open and that Ukraine, one day, will be a member of the Alliance. But the short term, the priority now, is on providing support to Ukraine to enable them to make more gains on the battlefield. And then to ensure that we can end the war in a way that ensures that Ukraine remains a sovereign independent nation in Europe. That's a precondition for any discussion about a membership.

Sarah Kelly: You have though – and I'd just like to quote you here – you have supported Finland and Sweden's bid. You came out and you said, "This would be a historic moment". Why do you dodge clearly answering whether or not you support Ukraine in a fast track bid?

NATO Secretary General: Because of course I strongly believe that Ukraine is in a different position than Finland and Sweden are. Finland and Sweden are long term partners of NATO, we have consensus in the Alliance on inviting them to become members, we made that decision at the Summit in Madrid in May. What we see in Ukraine is a war going on and the top priority is therefore to provide military support to Ukraine, as we do, as NATO Allies and partners. And this military support is unprecedented and it's really helped the Ukrainians to now make gains on the battlefield. Of course, the victories on the battlefield is something that belongs to the brave Ukrainian soldiers but, without the support from NATO Allies, they would have not been able to make these gains and to push the Russian invading forces back, as we have seen over the last weeks.

Sarah Kelly: But if we look back, in 2008 NATO pledged that Ukraine would eventually become an Alliance member. Ukraine, of course, has this on paper. Did NATO give false hopes to Ukraine all those years ago?

NATO Secretary General: No. This is still the ambition of the Alliance but the focus has been, since 2008, on reforms, on capacity building, on supporting Ukraine in moving towards NATO membership, as I also know that EU members have been working with Ukraine, moving towards EU membership. But of course, since 2014, we have been in a situation where Russia has annexed Crimea and controlled the eastern part of Donbas, so the main focus has then been to provide military support to Ukraine. And NATO Allies, especially the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, have trained and equipped the Ukrainian forces, not since February, but since 2014. And that has ensured that the Ukrainian armed forces are much bigger, much better trained, much better led, much better equipped now than in 2014, and this is making a huge difference on the battlefield, as we speak.

Sarah Kelly: Let's turn briefly to your Strategic Concept and to future threats. At the Chinese Communist Party Congress, President Xi Jinping said that China would use – and I'm quoting here – "All necessary measures to secure Taiwan". Is the next conflict for NATO with China?

NATO Secretary General: Well, Taiwan is not a NATO member, so our collective defence clause doesn't apply for Taiwan, but what we see is China...

Sarah Kelly: But Mr Secretary General, how would NATO respond if China were to invade Taiwan? How would NATO respond?

NATO Secretary General: I'm not going to outline exactly how NATO will respond. What we have stated clearly, and that's for the first time in our Strategic Concept, is that the rise of China matters for our security and it is a challenge for our values, for our interests, and for our security. And that is because China is now investing heavily in new modern military capabilities, also long range missiles, nuclear weapons. We see how they don't share our values, in the way they crack down on democratic voices, forces in Hong Kong, the minorities they abuse, and also how they coerce countries in the region. So, all of this makes it important for us to address the rise of China – not by isolating China, China is important also to engage with, and therefore we are both addressing the security challenges but also the need to engage with China, as we do. And I met recently with the Chinese Foreign Minister and that was my main message to him.

Sarah Kelly: The head of the British Cyber Intelligence Agency, he put it this way, he described the security threat posed by Russia as affecting the weather, while China's affects the climate. What do you think there is to be learned from Allies' support of Ukraine against the Russian invasion, should China move to invade or to illegally annexed territory?

NATO Secretary General: Sorry, in Taiwan?

Sarah Kelly: Anywhere, should they move to invade or illegally annex territory, in general.

NATO Secretary General: Well, in general, that's always unacceptable, that one country tries to grab land from another country. And that's the reason why we have reacted so strongly against the Russian invasion of Ukraine, because this is the biggest land grab since the Second World War in Europe, and also why we convey to China that, of course, they should be able to at least condemn the illegal war of Russia against Ukraine. And also, one of the reasons why we support Ukraine is to send a message to all other authoritarian leaders that we don't accept this kind of behaviour.

Sarah Kelly: I'd like to also ask you, you said last week that, when we look at the situation in Ukraine, that Allies have had to dip into their own arsenals in order to send supplies there. Were NATO members too complacent? Because if you look just at the first half of the year, only nine members were spending 2% of GDP or more on defence. Now, it seems to be a bit of a scramble in order to, you know, get stockpiles and increase production capacities, and it's coming amid hard economic times. Can it stay a priority?

NATO Secretary General: So, I have, we have, pushed for more defence investments across the Alliance for many years. And of course, we would like to see even more defence spending. Having said that, what we have seen since 2014 is the biggest reinforcement of NATO's collective defence since the end of the Cold War. Until 2014, NATO Allies were cutting defence spending; since 2014, all NATO Allies have increased defence spending, with hundreds of billions of extra US dollars. And we have increased the readiness of our forces. For the first time in our history, we have battlegroups in the eastern part of the Alliance. And all of this was triggered by the Russian annexation of Crimea and the control over eastern Donbas. So we were actually prepared when the invasion happened in February. We actually warned against it since last fall, shared intelligence depicting exactly the Russian plans to invade Ukraine. And on the day of the invasion, we activated our defence plans and further increased our military presence in the east. So, since 2014, we have adapted the Alliance, and the war didn't start in February, it actually started eight years ago when they went into Donbas and Crimea.

Sarah Kelly: Briefly, before we go, Secretary General – must Putin go for there to be a resolution in Ukraine? Yes or no?

NATO Secretary General: I will not... but you will not force me to give a yes or no answer to that. What we will do is that we will respond to the actions of Russia, regardless of who is in charge there, and we will continue to call on them to end this war. It was President Putin that started this war and it's President Putin can end this war tomorrow, by withdrawing his forces. We have to remember that if President Putin and Russia stops fighting, there will be peace. If President Zelenskyy and Ukraine stops fighting, Ukraine will cease to exist as an independent nation. And we don't want that to happen. That's exactly why we provide support to Ukraine.

Sarah Kelly: NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, thank you very much for joining us on Conflict Zone. Thanks for your time.

NATO Secretary General: Thanks so much for having me.

Sarah Kelly: Mr Secretary General, I understand that you have actually allocated some time for us here today in order to answer some questions from the audience. Hello, everyone. There's a roving microphone, so if you would like to ask a question please just raise your hand and somebody will approach you in order for you to do so. There's also the offer... there's also the option for you to submit your questions online as well. And I see somebody over here who has a question, and another question. Please, if you could just keep your questions very brief, two sentences, because our time is limited. Thank you.

Question: Thank you very much. I'm [inaudible] from Ukraine. Just a brief question to Secretary General, you've been referring that NATO will be keeping supporting Ukraine military, it's in your interest for Ukraine to win the war. How can you then reflect to the data from the Kiel Institute of World Economy, who actually calculated that general stockpiles of tanks of NATO and the EU combined, is around 2,000 something, and you’ve provided Ukraine with just 200 something, so it's less than 2%. Same goes for howizters and MLRS also, which is about 2-3%. So this amount is not sufficient enough for Ukraine to do this counteroffensive and to defeat Russia in the immediate future. So, what would be your reflection to that? Thank you.

NATO Secretary General: We are in constant close dialogue with the Ukrainian leadership. I have, over the last few days, spoken with Zelenskyy, President Zelenskyy, we have met with Defence Minister Reznikov, and we are also of course in contact with their military leaders, and also, of course, with Foreign Minister Kuleba and the political military leadership in Ukraine. And we are assessing exactly the questions you raised on the specific capabilities. I urge Allies to do more, and I'm actually reaching out to specific Allies on specific capabilities. But I don't think it will help my work if I start to, in a way, rank and list those different Allies. I welcome that, in total, NATO Allies are providing significant support, they have announced further support and they have also stated clearly that they are ready for the long haul. And of course, the US-led Contact Group for Ukraine, that met in the margins of the NATO defence ministerial meeting, is organising and coordinating these efforts. So, I understand the call from Ukraine for more support and we are working hard to ramp up even more support in the coming days and weeks and months.

Sarah Kelly: OK, the next question from the audience, if we could just quickly get the microphone over there.

Question: I'm Katie Chumbaze Deputy Head of Georgian Mission to the European Union. Secretary General, indeed this war of aggression of Russia didn't start in February 2022, and even not in 2014. This war actually started in 2008 when Russia invaded Georgia and occupied its two sovereign regions. My question that I asked also in the morning would be about proactive response and policy, to build peace and security throughout the transatlantic area. Because throughout the last 14 years, we all, the international communities, in the responsive mode, reacting to each and every act of aggression by Russia. So, in the long run, what should be the proactive policy of NATO and the collective west? Thank you.

NATO Secretary General: This is partly political and partly a military response to this: we need to strengthen our political partnership, our cooperation, our dialogue, with those countries which are vulnerable for Russian interference. Georgia is of course one of them, Russia is already controlling parts of Georgia's territory. But it's also about capacity building, training, and different types of support. NATO Allies provide support to Ukraine... sorry, Georgia, and we are working closely with Georgia as a close partner. And again, Allies have agreed to do more, especially in light of the brutal attack on Ukraine, it highlights the importance of proactively working with a country like Georgia. Then I think it's also about ensuring that, for instance, Georgia implements the necessary reforms and are addressing some of the concerns that we have expressed related to, for instance, corruption and democratic control over the security institutions. So, the more Georgia is able to address those concerns, I think the easier it is to mobilise the necessary support from NATO Allies.

Question: Mr Chaly, Ambassador Chaly from Ukraine, and I am sure that the only one real mechanism to prevent Russia using of nuclear weapons, tactical nuclear weapons against Ukraine, this is nuclear deterrence instruments. Nothing more. We need effective nuclear deterrence instruments. What do you think about possibility [inaudible] nuclear umbrella over the Ukraine, on the behalf of members of NATO who have nuclear weapons? Because, without it, we have a real risk that nuclear tactical weapons will be used in Ukraine.

NATO Secretary General: The NATO nuclear deterrent applies for our collective defence clause and for NATO territory. Again, when it comes to any use of nuclear weapons against Ukraine, I will not outline exactly how the response will be, that will depend on what kind of attack, the framework, the context of any use of nuclear weapons against Ukraine, or in Ukraine. The main purpose is, of course, to prevent that from happening. And that's also the reason why we are so clearly conveying the strong messages to Russia about the severe consequences, about that a nuclear war can never be won and must never be fought. And also why we so closely monitor what Russia does, especially now when they will soon have a nuclear exercise. That's what I have to say on that issue.

Sarah Kelly: Secretary General, I'm going to take some questions from online right now. The first one is, "What has to improve when it comes to EU-NATO coordination?" And I'd just like to mention in that vein, of course, top of mind is the commitment to coordinate on air defence systems that we saw made last week by about a dozen EU nations. For example, why is interoperability not higher already? Why are there gaps in coverage?

NATO Secretary General: Well, this new initiative to strengthen and to provide some more air and missile defence capabilities from European NATO Allies was something that was launched here at the NATO defence ministerial last week. I strongly welcome that initiative, it's important that NATO Allies actually are able to provide more air and missile defence systems because… not least, because of course this will be fully integrated into NATO's integrated air and missile defence. We already have a framework for and, the system for integrating our sensors, our radars, our air and missile defence capabilities. But of course, we need more capabilities and the German led initiative, which is supported by several other NATO Allies, is a way to provide those capabilities. But not outside the integrated NATO air and missile defence, but inside as part of this framework, to strengthen NATO's air and missile defence, and that's of course something we strongly welcome.

Sarah Kelly: Mr Secretary General, I'm seeing 30 seconds on the clock, but I'm still going to ask you one more question. It's, “Recently Russia has used Iranian drones to attack civilian settlements and infrastructure, what can NATO do to stop Iran and other countries from providing Russia with armaments targeted towards civilians?”

NATO Secretary General: No nation should support the illegal war of Russia against Ukraine. And this is a message from NATO, it's a message from NATO Allies, from the European Union, and from many others. In the short term, I think the most important thing we can do is to deliver on what Allies have promised, to step up and deliver even more air defence systems. We have to realise that we need different air defence systems for different types of threats, ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and then drones will require different types of systems. We need a layered approach. I mean, of course, Ukraine is a big country, many cities, so it is a huge task to protect all parts of Ukraine against all the different air and missile threats they are facing. NATO will, in the coming days, or shortly, deliver counter drone systems, hundreds of jammers that will help them to address the specific threat of drones, including of course Iranian-made drones that are now causing a lot of havoc or suffering in Ukraine. So, we are actually delivering on that in the very near future.

Sarah Kelly: NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, thank you so much for your time.

NATO Secretary General: Thanks so much again.