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NATO Summit to see important decisions on Ukraine, says Stoltenberg

NATO Summit to see important decisions on Ukraine, says Stoltenberg
10 July 2024 21:13

MOHAMMAD GHAZAL (WASHINGTON, DC)

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Wednesday said the Alliance’s summit will make important decisions for the future of deterrence and defence in Ukraine, and on how to expand partnerships, in particular with partners in the Asia-Pacific region.

In remarks to the press Wednesday during the 2024 NATO Summit in Washington, he said he expects the allies to agree to a substantial package, which will consist of five elements.

One is a NATO Command for Ukraine to provide security assistance and training, while another is a long-term pledge to continue and sustain support to Ukraine.

New announcements of immediate military support, including air defence and new bilateral security agreements between NATO allies and Ukraine are also to be announced during the summit during which the Alliance  celebrate the 75th anniversary of “the most successful Alliance in history.”

NATO will also step up mechanisms to ensure full interoperability between Ukrainian and NATO forces, including a new training and education centre in Poland, Stoltenberg said.

“All together these five elements constitute a strong bridge for Ukraine to membership of the Alliance. And I’m confident that Allies will then reiterate their commitment that Ukraine will become a member of NATO,” he said.

On deterrence and defence, he said NATO will ensure that there are forces in place to meet the requirements of the new and ambitious defence plans.

“We already have 500,000 troops on high readiness, the highest in decades…We will also integrate a new ballistic defence site in Poland,” Stoltenberg said.

He noted that allies are  stepping up when it comes to defence investments.

“We made the pledge ten years ago at the NATO Summit in 2014, that allies should spend 2% of GDP on defence. At that time, only 3 allies spent 2% or more on defence. This year, 23 allies will spend 2% or more of GDP on defence. This makes a big difference and demonstrates that allies are taking security extremely serious,” he added.

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