Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Olha Stefanishyna met with Lieutenant General Roger Cloutier, Commander of NATO's Allied Land Command in Europe.
"Ukraine's accession to NATO is a matter of principle for Ukraine's political leadership. Today is the historic moment when the President of Ukraine, the parliamentary majority and the Government are united in their desire to carry out all the necessary internal transformations on the way to Ukraine’s membership in NATO. First and foremost, we focus on modernizing the security and defense sector to align wth the Alliance's standards and practices. We have already started a key reform for this purpose - the transformation of the Security Service of Ukraine from a law enforcement agency into a special service, guided by the best world experience and practices of the Allies," said Olha Stefanishyna.
The parties discussed the strategic vectors of Ukraine's integration into NATO in the military sphere, in particular within the framework of the Enhanced Opportunities Partnership (EOP). Olha Stefanishyna focused on the fact that Ukraine is doing everything possible to make the most of the EOP status: recently, the President of Ukraine presented the relevant Roadmap to the NATO Secretary General in a letter.
Olha Stefanishyna outlined the agenda of strategic vectors of Ukraine's integration into NATO within the EOP:
faster achievement of interoperability of the Armed Forces of Ukraine with the troops of the Allies,
maximum access of Ukraine to participation in NATO missions, operations and exercises, including in the framework of the implementation of Article 5 of the Washington Treaty (collective defense),
exchange of confidential information between Ukraine and NATO in real time through secure communication channels according to Alliance standards,
appointment of Ukrainian representatives to positions in NATO headquarters, command structures and agencies.
"The capabilities and invaluable experience of our Armed Forces and special services in countering Russia's hybrid attacks already allow us to transfer to the next stage of Ukraine's integration into NATO, and thus significantly strengthen the world's best collective defense system. I am convinced that the security of NATO and Ukraine are interdependent, and this is the basis for the prosperity not only of Europe, but also of the entire transatlantic region," said the Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration.
For his part, the Commander of the NATO Land Forces reaffirmed his continued support by the Alliance of independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, in particular in the context of countering the armed aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine.
Ukraine was granted a NATO Enhanced Opportunities Partner status on 12 June 2020 by a decision of the North Atlantic Council, becoming the sixth country with such a status, along with Sweden, Finland, Australia, Jordan and Georgia. In order to be granted EOP status, a country must meet a number of criteria, including the outstanding participation of its forces in NATO operations and exercises, the rotation of NATO Response Forces, individual and collective training activities conducted by Allied forces, and others. Each NATO member country with enhanced capabilities builds its own partnership program with the Alliance, depending on national priorities.