This is to be announced later today on the sidelines of the NATO summit. President Selenskyj spoke of a “very important signal”.
At the end of the two-day NATO summit, the G7 group of western industrialized countries announced that it intended to offer Ukraine the prospect of supplying modern equipment for its air and naval forces. According to information from the German Press Agency, this emerges from the text for a statement that is to be published in the afternoon on the sidelines of the summit in Lithuania.
With it, Ukraine is assured long-term military support for the defensive struggle against Russia. However, far-reaching security guarantees for the time after a possible end of the war are not included. Such is understood, for example, as the assurance that in the event of an attack, military assistance will also be provided by one’s own troops.
No time perspective
Specifically, Germany and the other G7 states want to promise the government in Kiev that they will equip the Ukrainian armed forces so that they can continue to defend their homeland and, after the end of the Russian war of aggression, will be so strong that Moscow will not dare to launch any further attacks.
According to the document, modern equipment should also be made available in the “air and sea” areas. Air combat systems are mentioned as a key ability. A time perspective is not given.
The security guarantees for Ukraine on the way to eventual NATO membership are a “very important signal,” said Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. “If the G7 countries announce these guarantees today, then that will be an important, concrete success for us,” he added.
Kremlin: “Extreme mistake”
The Kremlin described the G7 group’s long-term security commitments as a threat to Russia’s security. “We consider this to be an extreme mistake and potentially very dangerous,” President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, according to Russian news agencies in Moscow.
If the G7 countries make any kind of promises to Ukraine, they are ignoring the international principle of “the indivisibility of security,” Peskov said. “That means: By giving Ukraine security guarantees, they are violating Russia’s security.” Moscow is still hoping for “wisdom” in the West. Otherwise, the countries made Europe “a lot more dangerous for many, many years”.
Selenskyj continues to insist on joining
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg considers the delivery of further weapons to be the most important task in supporting Ukraine, which is being attacked by Russia. “Of course, the most urgent task is to ensure that Ukraine can assert itself. Because if Ukraine does not exist, there is no question of membership,” he said during an appearance with the Ukrainian president.
The Ukrainian President Zelenskyy expressed his satisfaction with the results of the two-day NATO summit – but not unreservedly. One could “state that the results of the summit are nice,” but an invitation to join NATO “would have been ideal,” said Zelenskyj in Vilnius at a press conference with Stoltenberg.
He again stressed that it is important for Ukraine to join the defense alliance quickly. “We live under conditions in which we have to survive and our partners want to help us live, but in order to live we must first survive,” said the head of state, referring to the ongoing Russian war of aggression. Sometimes, however, it is difficult to make the partners understand certain things.
“Important signals” for Ukraine
In the bilateral talks he generally received “important signals” that his country would join NATO. “Ukraine fully understands that it cannot become a NATO member as long as the war is ongoing,” said Zelenskyy. Before the NATO summit, Kiev had pushed for concrete prospects of joining the military alliance.