"Ukraine should decide for itself": Stoltenberg on peace talks with Russia

Stoltenberg on Ukraine's peace talks with Russia

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said that Ukraine will make its own decision on the terms of ending the war with Russia. At the same time, he added that the Alliance's task is to assist Kyiv on the battlefield.

Stoltenberg emphasized that such cooperation between NATO and Ukraine would help strengthen Kyiv's position in future negotiations with Russia. He said this at a press conference on the eve of a meeting of NATO Foreign Ministers.

According to Stoltenberg, Ukraine must decide what acceptable ways to end the Russian-Ukrainian war are. At the same time, the NATO Secretary-General emphasized that Kremlin dictator Vladimir Putin is thinking not about negotiations but about how to plan a new war.

"Our responsibility is to support Ukraine and make sure it can liberate as much land as possible and put it in the best possible position when or if negotiations begin. Wars are by their nature unpredictable. We have not seen any signs that President Putin is planning for peace, in fact, he is planning for a new war," the official said.

In addition, he noted that the more military support the West provides to Ukraine, the stronger Kyiv's position will be on the battlefield and the stronger the Ukrainian position will be at the potential negotiating table.

"I think we should also recognize that Ukraine has already achieved great success and great victories. We have to remember where this conflict started at the beginning of the war. We were afraid that Ukraine would fall within a few weeks and that President Putin would control Kyiv within a few days. This did not happen, the opposite happened," Stoltenberg said.

The NATO Secretary-General emphasized that Ukrainian troops pushed the occupiers out of the north of the country and strengthened their positions in the east and south. As a result, the Ukrainian Armed Forces have already liberated 50% of the territory occupied by Russia at the beginning of the full-scale invasion.

"This is a great victory for Ukraine. At the same time, Russia has suffered heavy losses. It has lost significant combat capabilities, tens of thousands of troops and unrivaled personnel, and Russia is becoming more and more isolated politically, weaker economically and militarily. So, in general, what we have seen is a major defeat for Russia. They have not achieved their strategic goal of controlling Ukraine, and Ukrainians have achieved a lot. Again, the decision is up to Ukraine. Our duty is to put them in the strongest possible position," the NATO Secretary-General summarized.

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