NATO’s secretary general has taken part in a meeting of Ukraine’s National Security and Defence Council, during which a number of agreements were signed.
They included partnership in communications and agreement on the status of NATO’s Mission in Ukraine. Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko said he might bring up the issue of peacekeepers in the Donbass at the upcoming UN General Assembly.
“Russian troops are present in Ukraine. And they continue to support separatists with training, with equipment, with command and control. And therefore I call on Russia to withdraw all its forces from Eastern Ukraine and to fully implement the Minsk agreements,” said NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
Russia continues to deny involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine, but from being more than 60% against NATO membership before fighting began, Ukrainian public opinion has changed dramatically.
“About 64% of Ukrainian voters said they would vote for joining NATO. They indicated: the main reason for joining was that it would guarantee the safety of the country in future. The second reason was that NATO membership would be the first step on the road to join the EU,” said Sociologist Maria Zolkina from the Ilko Kucheriv Democratic Initiatives Foundation.
Earlier Poroshenko and Stoltenberg reviewed troops at the Peacekeeping and Security Centre of the Ukrainian army in Lviv in western Ukraine. however NATO once again declined to supply Ukraine with weapons.
“Petro Poroshenko has announced that Ukraine will hold a referendum on joining the military alliance. However, the poll will not take place in the near future. Before the referendum is held, the state needs to implement a number of serious reforms. First of all, Ukraine should reestablish peace and stability in its eastern regions and bring Ukrainian Armed Forces in line with NATO standards,” reports euronews’ Maria Korenyuk.