NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg insists that only Ukraine will decide what terms of peace negotiations with Russia will be acceptable to them, it is the alliance’s responsibility to support Kyiv with their decisions.
At a press conference on Monday, the Secretary General answered a question over the possibility of peace for Ukraine in exchange for the surrender of territories and renunciation of NATO membership.
“It is for Ukraine to the side what are acceptable ways to end this war. Our responsibility is to support Ukraine and to enable them to liberate as much land as possible and to put them in the best possible place, when or if negotiations may start,” the NATO Secretary General said.
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Stoltenberg said wars are by nature predictably unpredictable, the NATO chief said, “We have seen no sign that president Putin is planning for a peace, he is actually planning for more war.
“So what we do know is that the more military support we provide to Ukraine, the stronger their position will be on the battlefield and the stronger their position will be on a potential negotiating table.”
Stoltenberg said that it is also necessary to realise that Ukraine “has already achieved a big victory.
We have to remember where this conflict started: at the beginning of the war, we were afraid that Ukraine would collapse in weeks, and that President Putin would control Kyiv in days.
“That didn’t happen, the opposite happened. Ukraine was able to push Russian forces out of the north, east and south, they liberated 50% of the territory that Russia occupied at the beginning of the war, and they had prevailed as the sovereign independent democratic nation in Europe.
“This is a big victory for Ukraine. At the same time, Russia has suffered big losses, significant fighting capabilities, tens of thousands of troops and personnel, and Russia is becoming more isolated politically, weaker economically and militarily.
“So, in total what we have seen is big defeats for Russia – that had not achieved the strategic goal to control Ukraine, but the Ukrainians achieved a lot.
“Again, it is for Ukraine to decide, our responsibility is to put them in a strong position. And I welcome the continued support from NATO allies.”