In the framework of the working visit to the European institutions in Brussels, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman has met with NATO Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller.
In particular, the parties tackled the escalation of hostilities in eastern Ukraine and support for Ukraine by NATO.
The NATO member States expressed strong support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, stressed the NATO Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller during the conversation with journalists on the outcome of the negotiations.
"Since Russia’s aggressive actions began three years ago, NATO has stood by Ukraine. This will not change”, she said. “NATO does not, and will not, recognize the illegal annexation of Crimea and we condemn Russia’s continuing destabilization of eastern Ukraine. We are deeply concerned by the recent spike in violence."
Volodymyr Groysman informed the interlocutors on the new spike of the Russia's aggression against Ukraine along the contact line in the east of the country and, in particular, on the situation in Avdiyivka, which had suffered the most massive attack.
The Prime Minister thanked the NATO member countries for their unwavering support for Ukraine.
"What we heard today is a unanimous support for Ukraine in such a difficult time. We highly evaluate our cooperation with the NATO in all spheres. We are very grateful for the support", said the Head of Ukrainian Government.
The NATO Deputy Secretary General noted that the ceasefire in Donbas had been violated almost every day for the last two years. Last week, the OSCE mission registered over 10 thousand ceasefire violations in a single day, including with heavy weapons banned under the Minsk Agreements.
“We have seen the heaviest fighting in the past two years. We must not accept this as “the new normal”. It is essential that OSCE monitors are granted free access to all of Ukraine. Up to the border with Russia, as required by the Minsk Agreements”, stressed Rose Gottemoeller.
In this regard, the NATO Deputy Secretary General accentuated that Russia has a special responsibility for not abiding by the Minsk Agreements.
The meeting with NATO Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller took place because of the illness of NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
At the beginning of the meeting Rose Gottemoeller told: “The Secretary General regrets very much being unwell today and unable to meet with you today”.
In turn, Volodymyr Groysman wished the Secretary General speedy recovery.