President of the European Council Charles Michel said this at a briefing in Kyiv, answering a question from an Ukrinform correspondent.
“Maybe I will surprise you. We were putting in place de-facto security guarantees for Ukraine when we have decided immediately from the first days of the invasion to mobilize all our possible tools to support Ukraine, including by providing lethal military equipment to Ukraine a few hours following the start of the war. This is a very strong commitment and it was not because there was a treaty between Ukraine and the EU, it was because it was what we needed to do in those circumstances,” Michel said.
The European Council president added that the work is underway to clarify and stabilize for the future security guarantees for Ukraine.
“And that's why the European Council has tasked High Representative Borrell to start formal consultations with Ukraine and with our member states. There will be a first report on the topic in December. Maybe not the decisive moment, but just to show that this is something that we are assessing, and working on,” Michel said.
The European Council president also gave two other examples.
“First, the industrial and defense sector. In Europe, we are working very hard to make this industrial basis more solid, more robust, and there’s a lot to do on this question. We are working on the ammunition, for instance, trying to speed up production and make more efforts to deliver more ammunition," Michel said.
He also named the training of military personnel as second example.
“We have already trained 30,000 Ukrainian soldiers, and we will do more until the end of the year – some 40,000 in total. These are also security guarantees for the future. And this debate should be seen and addressed in parallel with the need to develop the European defense capabilities,” he said.
As reported, in early December, a delegation of the European Union will arrive in Ukraine to present proposals for security guarantees for Ukraine, developed on behalf of the European Council.
Earlier this month, EU High Representative Josep Borrell said that he had been instructed by European leaders to develop appropriate EU security commitments for Ukraine, which are being worked on together with member states.
Proposals for security guarantees will include a targeted military assistance package for Ukraine under the European Peace Facility and will be presented to the European Council by the end of the year, Borrell said.
In August 2023, EU Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Peter Stano said that the EU as an organization cannot provide Ukraine with security guarantees as such, as this is a matter for individual member states that have the appropriate resources, but the EU can "support" such guarantees.