Stoltenberg: Ukraine will join NATO – it's not a question of if but of when

Stoltenberg: Ukraine will join NATO – it's not a question of if but of when

Ukraine, its people, and soldiers demonstrate courage and resilience in defending their Homeland and continue to achieve success on the battlefield with the support and assistance from the Allies.

That’s according to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who spoke in a video address on the occasion of the second anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

“Today, we mark two years since Russian tanks rolled into Ukraine. Starting the biggest war in Europe since World War Two. The situation on the battlefield remains extremely serious. (…) President Putin’s aim to dominate Ukraine has not changed. And there are no indications that he is preparing for peace. But we must not lose heart. Ukraine has demonstrated remarkable skill and fierce determination again and again," the NATO Secretary General said.

He recalled that Ukraine did not collapse within weeks as many feared, but instead was able to liberate half of the territory that had been captured by Russia since the invasion, push Russia back from large parts of the Black Sea, and inflict heavy losses on Russian forces.

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"Above all, Ukraine retains its freedom and independence. This has been made possible by your courage and resolve. Enabled by major military and economic support from NATO Allies. Just in the past days and weeks, NATO Allies have announced new packages of aid worth billions of dollars. These cover key capabilities like artillery ammunition, air defense, and combat boats. As well as F-16 equipment and spare parts, drones, and demining equipment. More support is on the way," Stoltenberg noted.

He noted that Putin started this war to close NATO's door and deny Ukraine the right to choose its own path. But he has achieved the exact opposite: Ukraine is now closer to NATO than ever before, said the Secretary General.

Read also: Russia's war on Ukraine requires allies to strengthen security - Scholz

According to Stoltenberg, NATO is helping Ukraine’s armed forces to achieve greater interoperability with Allies. Ukraine and NATO will open a new Joint Analysis, Training and Education Center in Poland, and are further deepening political ties through the NATO-Ukraine Council, where the parties consult and make decisions together.

"Ukraine will join NATO. It is not a question of if, but of when. As we prepare you for that day, NATO will continue to stand with Ukraine. For your security, and for ours," Stoltenberg emphasized.

At the same time, NATO’s press service posted on X a video showing the Ukrainian military who have been trained on foreign soil, reciting the lines of the National Anthem of Ukraine.

As reported, on February 24, 2022, the Russian Federation launched a full-scale, unprovoked war of aggression against Ukraine. From the first day of the big war, NATO and individual allies have been providing political and practical assistance to Ukraine, including by supplying military equipment, modern weaponry, and ammunition, and continues to train Ukrainian servicemen who defend their Homeland from Russian invaders.


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