Updated: 14-Dec-2000 NATO Press Releases

(2000) 122
14 Dec. 2000

Statement on NATO-Ukraine

Meeting in Foreign Ministers' Session
Brussels, 14 December 2000

The NATO-Ukraine Commission met in Foreign Ministers' session at NATO Headquarters on 14 December 2000.

Ministers discussed questions related to regional security in the Euro-Atlantic area and, in this context, welcomed the contribution of the NATO-Ukraine partnership to European security. The Members of the Commission expressed their appreciation for the contribution of Ukraine to strengthening regional stability, establishing good neighbourly relations, and addressing unresolved conflicts in the area.

Ministers discussed the situation in the Balkans. They welcomed the Ukrainian contribution to KFOR both through its helicopter unit and the Ukrainian component of the Polish-Ukrainian battalion. Ministers reaffirmed their commitment to the full implementation of UNSCR 1244 ensuring a multi-ethnic and democratic Kosovo within the FRY.

Minister Zlenko briefed Allied Ministers on the initiative of the President of Ukraine towards the elaboration of a comprehensive strategy of conflict prevention, including improvements in preparing for peacekeeping operations.

Minister Zlenko informed the Commission of the latest steps taken in implementing Ukraine's policy of European integration and of broadening NATO-Ukraine relations on the basis of the Charter on a Distinctive Partnership. The Commission expressed its appreciation for the continuing efforts of President Leonid Kuchma to carry this process forward. Members of the Commission noted Ukraine's interest in the recent developments regarding NATO-EU arrangements.

Ministers stressed the importance of the recent resumption of the parliamentary dimension of NATO-Ukraine cooperation. Ministers welcomed the ratification by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty on 16 November 2000 as a practical step by Ukraine in further strengthening European security and stability.

The Members of the Commission noted the significant progress made in NATO-Ukraine co-operation under the Charter since their last meeting in Florence. They welcomed the exchange of high-profile visits and a wide range of political and expert level consultations. They underlined the substantial enhancement of NATO-Ukraine co-operative activities, including, inter alia, in the Joint Working Group on Civil Emergency Planning and through the first ever EAPC exercise of the Euro-Atlantic Disaster Response Coordination Centre (EADRCC) and Euro-Atlantic Disaster Response Unit (EADRU) - "Trans-Carpathia 2000" -, hosted by Ukraine ; in the Open-Ended Joint Working Group on Economic Security; in the NATO-Ukraine Joint Project on retraining of retired Ukrainian military personnel and in a Course on Defence Economics for Ukrainian officials organised in Kyiv ; and in the establishment of the Joint Working Group on Science and Environment.

Ministers expressed appreciation for the work and accomplishments of the Joint Working Group on Defence Reform. They highlighted the results of the senior level meeting of the Joint Working Group on Defence Reform on 5 October 2000 and expressed their high expectations for the extensive programme of activities identified by the Group for 2001. Members of the Commission welcomed the use of the PfP Planning and Review Process to support Ukraine's National Programme on the reforming and development of the Armed Forces of Ukraine for the period up to 2005.

Ministers exchanged views on the implementation of NATO's Weapons of Mass Destruction initiative to support non-proliferation efforts and agreed to further explore modalities of NATO-Ukraine consultations and co-operation on WMD-related matters.

Ministers endorsed an ambitious Work Plan for 2001. They placed particular emphasis on continued political consultations and practical cooperation, covering a wide range of activities, such as defence reform, economics, science and technology, civil emergency planning, military-technical co-operation, armaments and standardisation. Ministers welcomed the steps undertaken by Ukraine in the implementation of Ukraine's State Programme on Co-operation (USPC) with NATO for the period up to the year 2001, as well as the on-going preparation of the USPC for the period 2001-2004.

Members of the Commission expressed their satisfaction with the work of the NATO Information and Documentation Centre and the NATO Liaison Office in Ukraine, and agreed to continue to actively support them in fulfilling their respective missions.

Ministers expressed their appreciation for the decision by President Kuchma to close the Chornobyl nuclear power plant.

The Commission agreed to hold the next meeting in Foreign Ministerial session in Budapest in May 2001.

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