Stoltenberg and Biden reaffirm support for Ukraine, agree on “new commitment” to defense investment for Vilnius summit

Stoltenberg and Biden reaffirm support for Ukraine, agree on “new commitment” to defense investment for Vilnius summit

NATO is taking up the challenge of a long war in Ukraine and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has closed ranks with U.S. President Joe Biden. The support for Kiev will continue for as long as it takes and the allies will also will work on a “new commitment” to defense investment at the organization’s summit to be held next July in the Lithuanian capital, Vilnius. Moreover, Stoltenberg has taken it for granted during his visit to Washington that the Ukrainian Army “is advancing” in its counteroffensive against Russia.

“The support that NATO allies and partners are providing to Ukraine is making a difference on the battlefield. The Ukrainians have launched the offensive, they are advancing and gaining ground“, Stoltenberg assured at a meeting with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, whom he saw before moving to the Oval Office of the White House.

The Norwegian leader assumes that a future peace talk will depends first on what happens on the ground.The Atlantic Alliance believes that it is key for Volodimir Zelenski’s troops to consolidate their gains before sitting down at the table. “Then Vladimir Putin is more likely to understand that he will never win this battle,” the NATO secretary general sentenced. “In Vilnius we will intensify support for Ukraine and further strengthen our deterrence and defense, including with a new commitment to defense investment,” he added.

Chechnya's leader Ramzan Kadirov at a ceremony in Moscow on September 30, 2022.

In this regard, the United States has announced a new military aid package for Ukraine valued at $325 million. (over €300 million) as part of precisely the progress of the Ukrainian counteroffensive. “Pursuant to a request from President Biden, I am authorizing the 40th withdrawal for Ukraine, which will provide $325 million in arms and equipment,” Blinken himself expressed.

The package includes. additional ammunition for multiple rocket launcher systems (HIMARS), ammunition for air defense systems. Nasams, 155- and 105-millimeter artillery rounds, as well as 15 Bradley Comabte vehicles and 10 Strynker armored vehicles, among others. “The United States will continue to work with its allies and partners to provide Ukraine with the capability to meet its immediate battlefield needs and long-term security assistance requirements,” the Pentagon said.

Zelenski was quick to welcome the U.S. move. “It is exactly what the Ukrainian Defense Forces need today,” the Ukrainian president shared on social media. “We appreciate the Unconditional support of the kind Americans and effective assistance in liberation. of the territories temporarily occupied by the Russian aggressor. Together we will restore Ukraine’s territorial integrity, preserve its independence and protect its democracy,” he concluded.

And Stoltenberg’s replacement?

Another topic that may have been on the table, although it has not transpired, is the name of who will replace Jens Stoltenberg. at the head of NATO. The Norwegian will leave office later this year and whoever takes the seat needs, first and foremost and unofficially, a yes from the United States. In the pool of names, there are three favorites: the Danish Prime Minister leads the list, Mette Frederiksenbut the premier of the Netherlands is also in it, Mark Rutteas sources close to the Alliance have commented to 20minutosand also the current Minister of Defense of the United Kingdom, Ben Wallace.

Kayleigh Williams