Jul. 12, 2018

Secretary generalof NATO press statements at the July 2018 summit

President Poroshenko, dear Petro, it’s really a great pleasure to see you again and thank you for coming here to the NATO Summit and taking the time to meet all the NATO leaders.

Welcome to Brussels and welcome also to the new NATO Headquarters.

This morning we will discuss, together with President Margvelashvili of Georgia, the security situation in and around Ukraine, defence reforms and our practical cooperation.

NATO is firm in our support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

And we strongly condemn Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea.

In eastern Ukraine, the situation remains serious.

With repeated violations of the ceasefire and human rights every day.

The Minsk Agreements remain the path to peace.

So all parties need to implement their commitments.

And Russia has a special responsibility.

It must withdraw its troops and its support for militants in Ukraine.

Mister President, Ukraine’s long-term goal is to join the Alliance.

The focus now is on reforms.

You are making important progress.

The adoption of a new Law on National Security is a welcome step.

The Law is key to establish civilian control and democratic oversight over the armed forces and the security services.

The implementation of the Law is now necessary so that this reform can take effect.

So I encourage you to keep up the momentum.

This will bring Ukraine closer to NATO.

But above all, it will strengthen your security, and your democracy.

NATO and Allies continue to support the reform process by providing advice, training and equipment.

The Comprehensive Assistance Package of political and practical measures is also part of this support.

And it includes expert advisers in Kyiv.

And projects in areas like cyber defence, medical rehabilitation and logistics.

So President,

We deeply appreciate Ukraine’s contributions to NATO.

From Kosovo to Afghanistan.

And in the NATO Response Force.

Over twenty years of NATO-Ukraine distinctive partnership has contributed to Euro-Atlantic security.

And I want to thank you personally for your commitment to deepening these ties between Ukraine and the Alliance.

I look forward to an excellent meeting this morning. So once again, welcome.