Updated: 07-May-2003 May 2003

4-5 May 2003


NATO-Ukraine conference
focuses on defence reform

Several Defence Ministers and top officials from NATO and Ukraine met in Washington D.C. from 4 to 5 May 2003 to discuss cooperation in key areas at a high-level conference.

The informal, off-the-record consultations were co-organized by NATO and the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

They focused on defence reform in the Ukraine and NATO-Ukraine cooperation. Topics discussed included the pace of defence reform in Ukraine, the status of the planned defence review and how NATO Allies could be of further assistance to Ukraine in taking defence reform forward.

Opening the conference, NATO Secretary General Lord Robertson praised recent decisions made by Ukraine, saying that the implementation of the Prague commitments required Ukraine to take decisive action.

“ It is no secret that our relations have been through a rather difficult year,” he added, “Fortunately, much of that uncertainty has receded because the Ukrainian Government has made a determined effort to push ahead with its drive for Euro-Atlantic integration.”

NATO has been building a special partnership with Ukraine since 1997. Relations took an important step forward with the adoption of the NATO-Ukraine Action Plan at the 2002 Prague Summit, which provides a framework for intensified consultations and cooperation on political, economic, military and defence matters.

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