As external advisor to President Poroshenko, Anders Fogh Rasmussen convened the Friends of Ukraine bringing together leading politicians and former senior diplomats to make the case for a reformed and European Ukraine.
The Friends of Ukraine Group coordinates future outreach activities aimed at keeping a strategic and balanced debate while at the same time helping to relay advice from western capitals to President Poroshenko. This includes high-level meetings in the EU and the US with a focus on reforms, anticorruption, privatization, the situation in the East and the Minsk process, and NATO-Ukraine cooperation as well as media outreach. The group meets with President Poroshenko several times a year.
During its initial meeting the Group discussed the security situation in Ukraine and Western involvement in the resolution of the conflict in the east, including the extension of the sanctions regime. The Friends of Ukraine Group issued a declaration which calls for a bolder approach towards Russia and greater support for Ukraine and its reforms.
The Friends of Ukraine Group has met several times in 2017 in Kyiv, Munich and Brussels. During its recent visit to Ukraine, several members of the Group visited the Line of Contact in Eastern Ukraine where they met local soldiers and commanders of the Ukrainian forces to discuss the humanitarian and security situation on the ground.