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EU, Defence Ministry officials map nine priorities for long-term security guarantees for Ukraine

Among other things, these include EU cooperation with the Ukrainian defence industry.

EU, Defence Ministry officials map nine priorities for long-term security guarantees for Ukraine
Photo: Defence Ministry

Representatives of the European External Action Service have arrived in Kyiv to begin consultations on a security guarantee package for Ukraine on behalf of the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, the press service of the Ukrainian Ministry of Defence has said.

The areas of long-term EU assistance were presented by Charles Fries, Deputy Secretary-General for Common Security and Defence Policy in the European External Action Service, during talks with the Ukrainian delegation led by Deputy Minister of Defence Yuriy Dzhyhyr.

The package includes nine priorities for future EU security commitments to Ukraine:

- assistance with military equipment and hardware;

- training of the Ukrainian military;

- cooperation with the Ukrainian defence industry;

- countering cyber and hybrid threats;

- assistance in demining;

- implementation of reforms related to EU accession;

- strengthening the ability to control weapons stockpiles;

- support for nuclear security efforts;

- intelligence sharing, including satellite imagery.

Fries also stressed that the EU "is trying to ensure that we provide assistance to Ukraine as quickly as it is needed".

The European External Action Service is an EU body that performs the duties of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the diplomatic corps at the level of the European Union.

Security guarantees for Ukraine

- In July 2023, at a joint press conference with the NATO Secretary General, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said that Ukraine needs security guarantees before it becomes a member of the Alliance. These guarantees should not be "instead of NATO", but on the way to it, he stressed. The president said that the state currently has no real legal security guarantees from its partners, so this could be the first legal document. And then Ukraine may receive separate guarantees with individual guarantor countries. These documents will specify the specific things that Ukraine lacks, such as air defence and aviation, and the signatories to the guarantees will work to meet these needs. Not only G7 members, but also other countries can sign this document, although it was originally aimed at the G7.

- On 12 July, the G7 countries signed a declaration on long-term security guarantees and economic support for Ukraine. This declaration is a general framework document. The next step is to conclude bilateral security agreements between Ukraine and individual guarantor countries. Security guarantees will not be an alternative to NATO membership, they will simply be a security cushion for Ukraine, a transitional stage that will help strengthen and develop our country until it joins NATO.

- Since then, work has been ongoing to attract countries that could sign bilateral agreements with Ukraine. Kyiv is negotiating security guarantees with Germany, the United States and other partners, among others.

- On 4 December, on behalf of the President of Ukraine and the head of the presidential office, deputy head of the presidential office Ihor Zhovkva began the first round of consultations with the Deputy Secretary General for Common Security and Defence Policy in the European External Action Service, Charles Fries, on the EU's collective security guarantees.

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