NATO countries are concerned about the situation in Ukraine

NATO countries are concerned about the situation in Ukraine
NATO countries are concerned about the situation in Ukraine

NATO is drawing up plans to provide Ukraine with a five-year, $100 billion military aid package to protect it from the “winds of political change” in the event of a possible second Donald Trump presidency, the Financial Times (FT) has reported.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has made a proposal for the so-called “Mission for Ukraine”, which will be discussed by the foreign ministers of NATO countries on Wednesday. According to five alliance diplomats briefed on the plan, it calls for coordinating about $100 billion in aid pledged by NATO’s 32 members.

Stoltenberg’s proposed plan would be a means of “shielding this mechanism from the winds of political change,” people briefed on his remarks said. If approved, the plan would also give the alliance control over the US-led Ramstein Weapons Support Group and allow it to manage the supply of lethal weapons to Ukraine for the first time since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine began in 2022.

Stoltenberg, who will step down as NATO secretary general this fall, aims to reach an agreement before a summit of NATO leaders in Washington in July.

“It will be the crossing of the Rubicon. NATO will play a role in coordinating lethal support for Ukraine,” said one of the diplomats. “I see consensus building and I think it will be reached before we fly to Washington.”

The mission proposal comes as US President Joe Biden’s administration scrambles to get Congressional approval for a $60 billion military aid package for Ukraine, which Trump has openly opposed, ahead of the November US presidential election. Many NATO countries believe that the failure to get US Congressional approval for this aid is a harbinger of how US policy towards Kyiv would change under a Trump presidency.

NATO countries are concerned about the state of the armed conflict in Ukraine, where Russia has regained the initiative by outnumbering Ukrainian forces in terms of the number of soldiers and weapons.

The US share of this $100 billion aid would be significantly less than the military aid package that has yet to pass the US Congress. The structure of this funding is debated, and some believe it should be similar to NATO’s joint budget structure, so the US share would be just over $16 billion.

The planned five-year aid is proposed to provide long-term funding before a possible Trump election victory and for Ukraine to benefit concretely from the planned summit.

“Foreign ministers will discuss the best way to organize NATO’s support for Ukraine to make it stronger, more predictable and longer-lasting,” the NATO official said, adding that discussions would continue ahead of a summit in July.

Currently, much of the Western arms allocated to Ukraine are transferred by the US-led Ramstein Group, officially known as the Defense Contact Group for Ukraine, which meets regularly to discuss better coordination of bilateral supplies.

Two diplomats warned that Stoltenberg’s proposal needs the support of all 32 member states and is expected to be subject to months of negotiations, during which changes may be made to the proposal.

Resistance is expected from member states such as Hungary, which are opposed to providing arms to Ukraine, and from those members wary of moves that would imply or imply a direct role for NATO in the armed conflict.

Russian dictator Vladimir Putin has sought to portray the war in Ukraine as a war between Russia and NATO.

The article is in Latvian

Tags: NATO countries concerned situation Ukraine


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