NATO calls on Russia to withdraw troops from Ukraine| MENAFN.COM

Sunday, 05 February 2023 01:58 GMT

NATO calls on Russia to withdraw troops from Ukraine

(MENAFN- Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) BRUSSELS, July 10 (KUNA) -- NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg underlined the Alliance's continuing support for Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity during a visit to Kyiv, Ukraine, on Monday.

Speaking at a joint press conference with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, the NATO chief said, "We have just discussed the situation in Eastern Ukraine. The conflict continues to claim lives. The fighting has killed more than 10,000 people, including almost 3,000 civilians." It is clear, said Stoltenberg, "that the ceasefire is not holding and we are concerned by increasing threats against OSCE monitors. The Minsk Agreements remain the only path towards peace. Russia must withdraw its thousands of soldiers from Ukraine and stop supporting the militants," he stressed.

"We do not, and we will not, recognise Russia's illegal and illegitimate annexation of Crimea," said Stoltenberg.

He announced that NATO Allies have pledged almost EUR 40 million (USD 45 million) to support Ukraine in areas such as command and control, cyber defence and medical rehabilitation.

On his part, Poroshenko welcomed the visit to Ukraine by the North Atlantic Council, which includes the permanent representatives of the 29-member Alliance to celebrate 20 years of NATO's Distinctive Partnership with Ukraine.

He noted that Ukraine's desire to join NATO is one of its top foreign policy priorities.

Poroshenko, however, added that Ukraine is not going to immediately apply for NATO membership because the country has to reach the standards necessary to join. (end) nk.hb


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