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Ukraine a leading recepient of NATO's scientific and technical assistance

Over 600 international scientists and experts are involved in 35 long-time research projects jointly run by Ukraine and NATO countries.

Ukraine has become the main beneficiary of the scientific and technical assistance from NATO in the framework of NATO program "Science for Peace and Security" (SPS), the head of the NATO Programme Office Deniz Beten said is in exclusive comments to LB.ua.

The SPS budget for all NATO partner countries totals 12m euros, of which Ukraine has been allocated 2.5m euros. In addition, extra funds are allocated for long-term research programs, she said.

"This is an unprecedented move on behalf of NATO," Beten said.

The head of SPS program stressed that assistance under this program is different from trust funds designed to help Ukraine address the issues of logistics, communications, cyber crime and social rehabilitation of the wounded, which totalled 1,5bn euros.

Prior to the annexation of Crimea in 2014, the main recipient of NATO's scientific and technical assistance was Russia.

The program is a NATO signature mark and is based on the principles of science and security within the partnership and beyond it, and for decades has been contributing to the achievement of the key objectives of the Alliance.

As a Partnership tool it develops contacts between academics, experts and officials of NATO members and partner countries that work together to tackle common problems in the security-related areas. The program provides funding for professional and advisory assistance in carrying out measures devoted to urgent security issues - workshops, training courses and long-term scientific research projects.

Ukraine's participation began in the SPS program in 1991 and has since been constantly expanding. In the condition of the crisis in Ukraine, and in response to the political guidelines adopted by the members of the Alliance at a meeting of NATO foreign ministers in April 2014, the practical cooperation with Ukraine in the fields of science and technology will grow, Deniz Beten said.