Jens Stoltenberg said that Ukraine will be a member of NATO “for the long term”

Jens Stoltenberg (Reuters) (JOHANNA GERON /)

The general secretary of the NATOJens Stoltenberg, assured this Tuesday in Helsinki that the allied countries have agreed that Ukraine it will be a “long-term” member of the Alliance, although it insisted that the urgent thing now is to help Kiev maintain its independence.

NATO allies have agreed that Ukraine should become a member of our Alliancebut it is a long term perspective. What it is about now is to ensure that Ukraine prevails as a sovereign and independent nation and therefore we have to support Ukraine,” she told a news conference.

Stoltenberg stressed that both NATO and Western countries are lending kyiv “unprecedented military support” so that it can deal with the “aggressive war” launched a year ago by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

President Putin’s war against Ukraine continues and there are no signs that he is changing his plans. He wants to control Ukraine and he is not planning peace, he is planning more war and that is why it is extremely important that we support Ukraine,” he said.

Stoltenberg insisted that NATO and Western countries “are not part of the conflict” but have the right to help Ukraine defend itself against Russian military aggression. Days ago, Putin had stated that, by supplying weapons to kyiv, NATO was indirectly participating in the war.

Volodimir Zelensky participates in a NATO meeting from kyiv (photo: via Reuters)
Volodimir Zelensky participates in a NATO meeting from kyiv (photo: via Reuters) (UKRAINIAN PRESIDENTIAL PRESS SER /)

The secretary general also stated that NATO has the task of preventing the escalation of the conflict so that it does not turn into a full-blown war between Russia and the Alliance.

In this sense, the allies have increased their military presence in eastern Europe and the Baltic region “to send a clear message” to Russia that an attack on a NATO member will provoke a response from the entire Alliance. AND

Entry of Finland and Sweden

On the other hand, Stoltenberg insisted that both Finland and Sweden meet all the requirements to be members of the Atlantic Alliance and affirmed that “the time has come for them to enter NATO”.

Together with the Finnish Prime Minister, Sanna Marin, Stoltenberg stressed that the accession process of Finland and Sweden to NATO has been the fastest in the modern history of the Alliance, although it is currently blocked by Turkey’s reluctance.

Tayyip Erdogan’s government has made it clear that it is not opposed to Finland’s entry into the Alliance -although it does not ratify it either-, while maintains veto against Sweden for allowing pro-Kurdish demonstrations and the burning of a copy of the Koran on Swedish soil.

However, Stoltenberg said that “progress is taking place” to unblock the processas demonstrated by the meeting that representatives of Ankara, Helsinki and Stockholm will hold next week in Brussels, the first in more than five weeks.

Jens Stoltenberg with Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin (via Reuters)
Jens Stoltenberg with the Finnish Prime Minister, Sanna Marin (via Reuters) (LEHTIKUVA /)

“My message is that both Finland and Sweden have fulfilled what they promised in the trilateral agreement they made with Turkey last June in Madrid, so the time has come to ratify (their membership) and fully welcome them as members“, said.

Stoltenberg assured that completing the entry of both Nordic nations is “a priority both for me personally and for the Alliance” and said he was “working hard” so that it occurs as soon as possible, although the approval of Turkey and Hungary is necessary beforehand. , the only two allies that have not yet ratified it.

“We are using the argument that of course it would be good for Finland and Sweden, but it would also be good for NATO to have Finland and Sweden as members as soon as possible,” he said.

Stoltenberg took advantage of his visit to Helsinki to send a message of calm to the population of both Nordic countries and said that “it is inconceivable that there is any threat against Finland and Sweden without NATO reacting.”

For her part, the Finnish Prime Minister, Sanna Marin, defended the historic decision of Helsinki and Stockholm to end decades of military neutrality to request their entry into the Alliance after the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“The reason why we are applying for NATO membership is very simple: the NATO line is the only one that Russia would not dare to cross,” he said.

(With information from EFE)

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