NATO allies supply Ukraine safety assurances as Biden hits out at ‘craven’ Putin By Reuters


© Reuters. Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz meet throughout a NATO leaders summit in Vilnius, Lithuania July 12, 2023. REUTERS/Yves Herman


By Steve Holland, Andrew Grey, John Irish and Sabine Siebold

VILNIUS (Reuters) -President Joe Biden accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of getting a “craven lust for land and energy” on the finish of a NATO summit on Wednesday the place Ukraine received new safety assurances from the U.S. and its allies for its defence in opposition to Moscow.

Members of the world’s strongest navy bloc supplied the prospect of long-term safety a day after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy decried as “absurd” a refusal to supply an invite or timetable for Ukraine’s entry into NATO.

Ukraine has been pushing for fast membership whereas preventing a Russian invasion unleashed in February 2022 that has killed tens of 1000’s of individuals and displaced tens of millions.

As a substitute, a declaration by the G7 group of the world’s most industrialised nations launched a framework for bilateral negotiations to offer navy and monetary assist, intelligence sharing and a promise of rapid steps if Russia ought to assault once more.

“Our assist will final lengthy into the longer term. It is a highly effective assertion of our dedication to Ukraine,” Biden stated alongside Zelenskiy and leaders of the G7, which is made up of the U.S., Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan.

Later in a speech on the NATO summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, Biden stated Putin had badly underestimated the resolve of the U.S.-led navy alliance.

“NATO is stronger, extra energized and sure, extra united than ever in its historical past. Certainly, extra important to our shared future. It did not occur accidentally. It wasn’t inevitable,” Biden stated.

“When Putin, and his craven lust for land and energy, unleashed his brutal struggle on Ukraine, he was betting NATO would break aside. He thought NATO would break. He thought our unity would shatter on the first testing. He thought democratic leaders can be weak. However he thought flawed.”

Swallowing his disappointment over the shortage of a membership timetable, Zelenskiy known as the result a “significant success” following a flurry of bulletins of navy help for Kyiv.

“At present there are safety ensures for Ukraine on the best way to NATO,” he stated. “The Ukraine delegation is bringing dwelling a major safety victory for Ukraine.”

Nonetheless, Zelenskiy pressed for extra and stated he would increase Ukraine’s want for long-range weapons at a gathering with Biden on the summit.

“We will state that the outcomes of the summit are good, but when there was an invite, they’d be ideally suited,” he added.

On the bilateral assembly, Biden promised Zelenskiy the U.S. was doing all the things it might to fulfill Ukraine’s wants and acknowledged Zelenskiy’s frustration concerning the scale and velocity of assist.

“Your resilience and your resolve has been a mannequin for the entire world to see,” Biden stated. “I stay up for the day after we’re having the assembly celebrating your official, official membership in NATO.”

“The unhealthy information for you is, we’re not going anyplace. You are caught with us,” Biden joked, prompting laughter from Zelenskiy.

Requested by a reporter how quickly after the struggle he would really like Ukraine to affix NATO, Biden responded “an hour and 20 minutes”.

U.S. nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan stated Biden would supply Zelenskiy long-range missiles after they met.

Zelenskiy advised Biden he needed to thank “all People” for the billions of {dollars} in help his nation had acquired.

“You need to know that you simply spend this cash” for extra than simply preventing, he stated. “You spend this cash for our lives.”

British Defence Secretary Ben Wallace stated he had advised Ukraine that its worldwide allies have been “not Amazon (NASDAQ:)” and Kyiv wanted to point out gratitude for weapons donations to steer Western politicians to offer extra.

Zelenskiy stated: “We have been all the time grateful to the UK, prime ministers and the minister of defence as a result of the individuals are all the time supporting us.”

Britain, France, Germany and the U.S. have been negotiating with Kyiv for weeks over a broad worldwide framework of assist, encompassing trendy superior navy tools reminiscent of fighter jets, coaching, intelligence-sharing and cyberdefence.

In return Ukraine would pledge higher governance, together with by way of judicial and financial reforms and enhanced transparency.

The primary sitting of a brand new NATO-Ukraine Council was additionally held on Wednesday, a format designed to tighten cooperation between Kyiv and the 31-nation alliance.


NATO is constructed round mutual safety ensures whereby an assault on one is an assault on all, and it has rigorously averted extending any agency navy commitments to Ukraine, anxious it will threat taking it nearer to a full-on struggle with Russia.

Ukraine has been cautious of any less-binding safety “assurances”, given Russia’s invasion already trampled the so-called Budapest Memorandum underneath which worldwide powers dedicated to conserving the nation secure in trade for Kyiv giving up its Soviet-era nuclear arms.

Talking earlier alongside Zelenskiy, NATO Secretary Normal Jens Stoltenberg stated Ukraine was nearer to the alliance than ever earlier than, and brushed apart new warnings from Russia concerning the penalties of supporting Ukraine.

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak stated the safety preparations for Ukraine weren’t designed to be an alternative choice to full NATO membership and stated the commitments on the summit marked a excessive level for the West’s assist for Kyiv.

Russia, which says NATO’s eastward enlargement is an existential risk to its personal safety, swiftly lashed out.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated it was “doubtlessly very harmful” for the West to offer Ukraine safety ensures.

Dmitry Medvedev, the deputy secretary of Russia’s highly effective Safety Council chaired by President Vladimir Putin, stated rising navy help to Ukraine by NATO was bringing nearer a World Battle Three.

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