NATO Touts “Collective Defense,” Severs All Ties With Russia
North Atlantic Treaty Organization
April 1, 2014
NATO takes measures to reinforce collective defence, agrees on support for Ukraine
NATO foreign ministers on Tuesday (1 April 2014) reaffirmed their commitment to enhance the Alliance’s collective defence, agreed to further support Ukraine and to suspend NATO’s practical cooperation with Russia. “NATO’s greatest responsibility is to protect and defend our territory and our people. And make no mistake, this is what we will do,” NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said.
Ministers directed Allied military authorities to develop additional measures to strengthen collective defence and deterrence against any threat of aggression against the Alliance, Mr. Fogh Rasmussen said. “We will make sure we have updated military plans, enhanced exercises and appropriate deployments,” he said. NATO has already reinforced its presence on the eastern border of the Alliance, including surveillance patrols over Poland and Romania and increased numbers of fighter aircraft allocated to the NATO air policing mission in the Baltic States.
On Ukraine, NATO foreign ministers decided to intensify efforts to support the country’s defence reforms. The Alliance will also provide advice on Ukraine’s protection of critical infrastructure. In a separate meeting with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Andrii Deshchytsia, the Allies and Ukraine condemned Russia’s illegal military intervention in Ukraine and Russia’s violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
NATO Foreign Ministers also agreed to suspend all of NATO’s practical cooperation with Russia. “Through its actions, Russia has chosen to undermine the very foundations upon which our cooperation is built,” said the Secretary General. “In light of this, there can be no business as usual.”
Allied ministers urged Russia to engage in dialogue towards a political and diplomatic solution that respects international law and Ukraine’s internationally recognized borders.
In light of the Ukraine crisis, preparations for the Alliance’s summit in Wales this September are even more important, Mr. Fogh Rasmussen said. “We remain committed to all our core missions. We will further develop our partnerships through defence capacity building and by building upon our experience in operations in order to further promote security and stability together and we will continue to invest in our readiness, so that we stay strong and prepared for any challenge.”
North Alantic Treaty Organization
April 1, 2014
Statement by NATO Foreign Ministers
1 April 2014
1.We, the Foreign Ministers of NATO, are united in our condemnation of Russia’s illegal military intervention in Ukraine and Russia’s violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. We do not recognize Russia’s illegal and illegitimate attempt to annex Crimea. We urge Russia to take immediate steps, as set out in the statement by the NATO-Ukraine Commission, to return to compliance with international law and its international obligations and responsibilities, and to engage immediately in a genuine dialogue towards a political and diplomatic solution that respects international law and Ukraine’s internationally recognized borders. We support the deployment of an OSCE monitoring mission to Ukraine.
2.Our goal of a Euro-Atlantic region whole, free, and at peace has not changed, but has been fundamentally challenged by Russia. We support the sovereignty, political independence, and territorial integrity of all states within their internationally recognised borders. An independent, sovereign, and stable Ukraine, firmly committed to democracy and respect for human rights, minorities, and the rule of law, is key to Euro-Atlantic security.
3.In order to demonstrate our commitment to Ukraine, we will intensify our cooperation in the framework of our Distinctive Partnership. Today NATO and Ukraine have agreed, as set out in the statement by the NATO-Ukraine Commission, to implement immediate and longer-term measures in order to strengthen Ukraine’s ability to provide for its own security.
4.We have also today agreed a package of measures aimed at deepening our cooperation with other NATO partners in Eastern Europe, in consultation with them and within our existing bilateral programmes.
5.Over the past twenty years, NATO has consistently worked for closer cooperation and trust with Russia. However, Russia has violated international law and has acted in contradiction with the principles and commitments in the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council Basic Document, the NATO-Russia Founding Act, and the Rome Declaration. It has gravely breached the trust upon which our cooperation must be based.
6.We have decided to suspend all practical civilian and military cooperation between NATO and Russia. Our political dialogue in the NATO-Russia Council can continue, as necessary, at the Ambassadorial level and above, to allow us to exchange views, first and foremost on this crisis. We will review NATO’s relations with Russia at our next meeting in June.
7.As stated by our Heads of State and Government at the Chicago Summit in 2012, NATO is based on solidarity, Alliance cohesion, and the indivisibility of our security. In the current situation, the Alliance has already taken steps to demonstrate solidarity and strengthen its ability to anticipate and respond quickly to any challenges to Alliance security. We will continue to provide appropriate reinforcement and visible assurance of NATO’s cohesion and commitment to deterrence and collective defence against any threat of aggression to the Alliance.