Josep Borrell, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, made a corresponding statement before the Western Balkans’ session of the Ministerial meeting of NATO.
The full text of his statement is published on the website of the European External Action Service.
Despite the fact that today's session with the participation of NATO ministers is devoted to the stability of the Western Balkans, Borrell also expressed his intention to speak about Ukraine.
“I cannot not talk about Ukraine, it is not in the Western Balkans, but it is an issue of utmost importance. Yesterday I was with the Prime Minister of Ukraine [Denys Shmyhal] in Brussels; today I will meet the Foreign Affairs Minister [of Ukraine, Dmytro Kuleba]. And in both cases, I want to stress that, for the European Union, the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine is above anything. And we will be standing firmly and decisively with Ukraine in front of any attempt to undermine its territorial integrity and sovereignty,” Borrell stressed.
He added that the EU is trying to do things in order to avoid that the tension increases.
“This kind of crisis have to be prevented, because once they start, it is going to be much more difficult to face it. So, everything has to be done in order to make clear that any aggression against Ukraine will have a strong response. And that is what we are going to talk about today here [during the meeting] also,” the EU High Representative added.
A two-day meeting of NATO foreign ministers is taking place in Riga on December 1 to discuss the current security situation and preparations for the Alliance's next summit in Madrid. The EU High Representative and NATO's European partners – Sweden and Finland – are invited to this discussion.
Today, the foreign ministries of Ukraine and Georgia are also invited to participate in the meeting of NATO ministers.
Photo credit: DPA
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