Statement by former NATO Secretary General and Danish Prime Minister, Anders Fogh Rasmussen on the Vilnius NATO summit and G7 declaration on support for Ukraine:
“Today G7 members will adopt a wide-ranging security pact with Ukraine in Vilnius. This is an important moment and it is welcome that it happens on the sidelines of the NATO summit. It shows Ukraine’s partners are united in moving from the ad-hoc support provided to date to a long-term vision from Ukraine’s security.
This agreement is built on the Kyiv Security Compact that I authored with the President Zelenskyy’s Chief of Staff Andriy Yermak. It includes the four central elements that we proposed: transfer of NATO standard weapons, enhanced intelligence sharing, a major expansion of training and exercises with Ukrainian forces, and support to develop Ukraine’s military industrial base. Its purpose is clear, to ensure that Ukraine wins this war and make sure Russia is never able to do this again.
Despite welcome developments on security guarantees, the NATO summit has disappointed when it comes to outlining a clear path to Ukraine’s membership. Security guarantees are not an end destination for Ukraine – they are designed to provide stability while Ukraine moves towards NATO and EU membership. Vilnius was an opportunity to set out these next steps clearly, instead there was only a promise that Ukraine will be invited when unspecified “conditions are met.”
Since 2008, Ukraine has been left in NATO’s waiting room. This is a dangerous place to be. If we want to move on from the mistakes of the past, the new Ukraine-NATO Council must not be another talking shop. Instead, it must focus on practical questions to move Ukraine’s NATO aspirations forward, with a concrete timeline. By next year’s NATO summit in Washington, NATO leaders should be able to extend an invitation for Ukraine to join the alliance. Only when this happens will Vladimir Putin understand that Ukraine’s future is at the heart of NATO, and there is nothing he can do to prevent it.”