Under the severe restrictions caused by the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, Defence Minister Andrii Taran continues to maintain international relations and actively communicates with his foreign counterparts.
On April 8, he held a telephone conversation with U.S. Secretary of Defence Dr. Mark T. Esper.
Heads of the defence agencies confirmed strategic nature of the partnership and the full support of Ukraine by the United States in countering Russian armed aggression, as well as immutability of the course towards protecting sovereignty and restoring Ukraine’s territorial integrity, both at the political and military levels.
One of the factors contributing to the country’s defence capability is preserving of health and life of personnel, which is of great importance in the context of the spread of the COVID-19.
Ukrainian Defence Minister assured his U.S. counterpart of the irreversibility of the defence reform in accordance with NATO standards and expressed words of gratitude to Mark T. Esper for the substantial U.S. assistance provided to the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Special emphasis was placed on military-technical cooperation and the first armament procurements by the Defence Ministry of Ukraine from the USA.
U.S. Secretary of Defence was briefed on the activities of the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine and public authorities in the context of the implementation of arrangements for the second tranche of U.S. security assistance.
Within the implementation of defence reform, Andrii Taran noted the importance of U.S. strategic level advisory assistance within human resources and defence industry reforms.
Ukrainian Defence Minister also confirmed the continuation of the Euro-Atlantic integration policy and outlined the priorities of the Defence Ministry.
In the course of the conversation, the parties discussed the necessity of adjusting key events of the bilateral defence cooperation during the pandemic, which are of utmost importance for maintaining the combat capabilities of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
U.S. Secretary of Defence Dr. Mark T. Esper expressed support to the Minister of Defence of Ukraine Andrii Taran in the implementation of defence reform, as well as reiterated his unwavering support for Ukraine’s sovereignty.
The Minister of Defence of Ukraine and the Secretary of Defence of the United States of America agreed to maintain an ongoing strategic level dialogue, both at ministerial level and at the level of their deputies.