NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen visited Estonia on the occasion of Independence Day.
Speaking at the tripartite press conference with Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas in the capital Tallinn, Stoltenberg stated that Russia violated international law with the invasion and attack it launched against Ukraine exactly one year ago.
Stoltenberg, “Russian President Vladimir Putin has failed, Ukraine has survived. The EU and NATO stand with Ukraine.” said.
Stating that Putin wants more war, Stoltenberg noted that Ukraine, which is at war with Russia, should be given its needs, and concerns were expressed that this would escalate tensions, but that there was no risk-free option.
Stoltenberg reported that he invited Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to the NATO Summit to be held in Lithuania in July.
Message from NATO to China
“Support for Ukraine is not only morally necessary, but also imperative for our security interests.” Stoltenberg replied to a question about China’s arms support to Russia:
“We did not see any arms shipments from China to Russia in terms of military support. However, what we see are signs that China may be considering providing arms. China should not do this. Because this support for an illegitimate war means a violation of international law and the UN Charter. China is a member of the UN Security Council and has a special obligation to uphold the UN Charter.”
Asked for his opinion on the Chinese administration’s submission of a peace plan, Stoltenberg said that China does not condemn the invasion, so it has no credibility.
Reminding that an “unlimited partnership” agreement was made between Russia and China, Stoltenberg said that this war will end at the negotiating table, and that when that time comes, Ukraine must have won on the battlefield in order to have a strong hand, and military support is needed for this.
“The way to find a peaceful solution tomorrow is to provide military support today,” Stoltenberg said. used the phrase.
Pointing out that they have concerns about Moldova, Stoltenberg stated that they should increase their cooperation with Moldova against Russia.
EU calls on Ukraine to increase support
EU Commission President von der Leyen emphasized that Russia has weakened both on the battlefield and economically with the effect of sanctions, but the danger it poses to Ukraine continues.
“We have to double our support.” “We must continue to give Ukraine the means to defend itself until the Russians end this war and leave Ukraine,” von der Leyen said. shared his opinion.
Von der Leyen noted that the EU and its member states should support Ukraine financially, economically and militarily, increase their own defense capacities and increase the pressure on Russia.
Voicing that they aim to train 30,000 Ukrainian soldiers in the EU, von der Leyen said that they are considering the option of joint purchase to procure emergency military supplies such as 155 millimeter ammunition.
Ukraine’s EU membership
Von der Leyen, on the question of Ukraine’s EU membership, underlined that the accession process is based on merit and depends on the performance of the candidate country.
Von der Leyen said that it was impressive that Ukraine took steps towards membership while fighting.
“With the strong support of the EU Commission, how they will perform, how they will reform, how they will improve their country’s status is of course in Ukraine’s hands. In the spring we will have a process where progress is presented to the member states verbally. But more importantly, in the autumn is the report summarizing the progress of all candidate countries. I am confident that he will be successful in this report, which will be presented to the member states in the autumn.”
China’s call for a political solution
In response to a question about the “document of attitude”, which includes the proposals for the “political solution of the Ukraine crisis” announced by China on the anniversary of the war, von der Leyen replied these items, including the “unlimited partnership” that China declared with Russia before the war. He said they would consider it.
Joint purchase proposal from Estonia
Estonian Prime Minister Kallas also stressed the importance of continuing support for Ukraine.
Citing the EU’s joint purchase of vaccines in the COVID-19 epidemic to provide military support to Ukraine, Kallas stated that this could also be applied to military support.
Kallas also stated that Russia’s aggression against Ukraine should not go unpunished and that they want those responsible to be punished by the international community.