Updated: 05-Dec-2003 NATO Speeches


5 Dec. 2003


by NATO Secretary General Lord Robertson at the Meeting of the NATO-Ukraine Commission at Foreign Ministers' level

Good morning Ministers, ladies and gentlemen.

I am happy to see you here, Minister Hryshchenko. Although we have spent many hours together in this room in the past, this is your first meeting of the NUC as Ukraine's Foreign Minister, as well as my last as Secretary General of NATO.

I welcome you and your delegation here to our meeting here this morning.

Let me open this meeting by saying that Allies remain committed to the NATO Ukraine relationship. I hope that today this Commission will take note of the progress made in bringing this relationship to a qualitatively new level over the past year.

The NATO-Ukraine Distinctive Partnership continues to make an essential contribution to security and stability in the Euro-Atlantic area. Allies appreciate Ukraine's ongoing commitment to support peacekeeping efforts in the Balkans, as well as its provision of support to the operations in Afghanistan and in Iraq. Our political and military co-operation has become a permanent feature of the Euro Atlantic security landscape.

Within the NATO-Ukraine Action Plan adopted at our last meeting in Prague, NATO and Ukraine agreed to joint principles and objectives in the political, economic, military, security and defence spheres, which are supported by specific measures for Ukrainian, and NATO-Ukraine joint action, contained in the Annual Target Plan 2003. If fully implemented by Ukraine, the benchmarks and actions contained in the Annual Target Plan will help Ukraine pursue – and eventually achieve – its aspirations for Euro-Atlantic integration.

With the Action Plan and the Annual Target Plan, Allies and Ukraine set themselves ambitious goals. We have heard, both in our last meeting in Madrid and at the recent NUC Ambassadorial, of the determined efforts that have been made to meet these goals. While we welcome this progress, Allies have underscored that much work remains to be done to realise the objectives set forth in the Action Plan.

NATO will continue to encourage Ukraine to demonstrate its commitment to our common values in all areas of its internal and external activities, and to the transparency and co-operation expected of a loyal partner.

With this, ladies and gentlemen I would like to give the floor to Minister Hryshchenko.

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