Updated: 03-Oct-2003 September 2003

30 Sept 2003


New Ukrainian Foreign Minister at NATO HQ

29/09/03 - NATO
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine to visit NATO Headquarters
30/09/03 - NATO
High resolution photos
30/09/03 - NATO
Audio file of the Joint Point de Presse .MP3/3099Kb

The newly appointed Foreign Minister of Ukraine, Mr Kostyantyn Gryshchenko, came to NATO HQ on 30 September for a bilateral meeting with Lord Robertson.

During a joint press conference with the Secretary General, Mr Gryshchenko reiterated Ukraine's commitment to meeting NATO standards with a view to becoming a member of the Alliance. Lord Robertson congratulated the Minister - a civilian who has previously served as Head of the Ukrainian Mission to NATO - on the state of NATO-Ukraine relations and the deployment of Ukrainian troops to Iraq in support of Poland. However, he encouraged Ukraine to continue developing more flexible and more mobile forces for future operations by pursuing defence reform in the country. Lord Robertson also urged Ukraine to continue democratic and economic reform.

The Annual Target Plan and the NATO-Ukraine Action Plan are the blueprints for the reform and modernisation of Ukraine's armed forces, the Secretary General stated, adding that the job of defence reform is, despite NATO's assistance, in the hands of the Ukrainians.

The Secretary General will be visiting Kyiv at the end of the month to discuss ways of further deepening NATO-Ukraine relations.