woensdag 16 april 2014

Ukraine crisis: statement by NATO's SG Anders Fogh Rasmussen

(following a meeting of the North Atlantic Council on 16 April 2014)

We have just taken further measures to respond to the crisis in Ukraine.

We agree that a political solution is the only way forward.

NATO fully supports the Geneva talks and all the efforts of the international community to find a political solution, which fulfils the democratic aspirations of the entire Ukrainian people and respects the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.

We call on Russia to be part of the solution. To stop destabilising Ukraine, pull back its troops from the borders and make clear it doesn't support the violent actions of well armed militias of pro-Russian separatists.

NATO's core task is to protect and defend our Allies. We have already taken a series of steps, including enhancing our Air Policing mission in the Baltic States, and AWACS surveillance flights over Poland and Romania.

Today, we agreed on a package of further military measures to reinforce our collective defence and demonstrate the strength of Allied solidarity.

We will have more planes in the air, more ships on the water, and more readiness on the land.

For example, air policing aircraft will fly more sorties over the Baltic region. Allied ships will deploy to the Baltic Sea, the Eastern Mediterranean and elsewhere, as required. Military staff from Allied nations will deploy to enhance our preparedness, training and exercises. Our defence plans will be reviewed and reinforced.

We will start to implement these measures straight away. More will follow, if needed, in the weeks and months to come.

Our decisions today are about defence, deterrence and de-escalation. They are entirely in line with our international commitments.

They send a clear message: NATO will protect every Ally and defend against any threat against our fundamental security.

That is our firm commitment.

(NATO, 16 April 2014)

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