Friday

29th Sep 2023

Nato supports Ukraine's territorial integrity against Russian occupation

The allied countries under Nato command have condemned Russia’s military occupation of Ukraine’s Crimea, as world leaders threaten to oust Moscow from the G8 economic club.

“Nato allies will continue to support Ukrainian sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity,” said the North Atlantic Council, Nato’s main decision-making body, on Sunday (2 March), in a statement.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

  • Nato says military action against Ukraine by forces of the Russian Federation is a breach of international law (Photo: Nato)

It added that Ukrainian people have a right to determine their own future “without outside interference.”

Ukraine is not a member of Nato and the military bloc is not obliged to come to its aid.

But for their part, two Nato members, Lithuania and Poland, had called for the NAC meeting citing article 4 of the Nato treaty, saying that they themselves feel that their own “ territorial integrity, political independence or security” is under threat due to the events in Ukraine.

Some 6,000 Russian airborne and ground troops poured into the peninsula over the weekend, with reinforcements still arriving as Ukraine’s interim government put its military on high combat alert.

Ukrainian military bases in Crimea are now surrounded by Russian troops and local militia and Ukrainian soldiers are being urged to defect.

Some already have: Denys Berezovsky, who was appointed Ukraine’s Rear Admiral on Saturday by the interim government in Kiev, proclaimed his allegiance on Sunday “to the supreme commander of the autonomous republic of Crimea.”

Berezovsky told Ukrainian naval forces in the area to stand down and reject any orders from Kiev.

Meanwhile, the US conceded that Russia now has “complete operational control of the Crimean peninsula” as Western leaders try to put pressure on Moscow to withdraw troops by threatening economic and political isolation.

Russia’s G8 partners, for their part, decided to suspend an upcoming summit in Sochi in June.

“We are united in supporting Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and its right to choose its own future,” said the seven industrialised nations in a statement.

The leaders, representing Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States and the EU, said they will not engage with Russia on the summit "until the environment comes back where the G8 is able to have meaningful discussion.”

Ideas floated by US senior administration officials include kicking Russia out of the economic club, which it joined in 1998.

But excluding Russia from G8 altogether has received a lukewarm response from Germany’s foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

Steinmeier said the economic forum is the only one in which the West can speak directly with Russia.

“Should we really give up this unique format?”, he told German public broadcaster ARD.

Germany relies heavily on Russian natural gas produced and delivered by Russia’s state-owned Gazprom.

Putin, for his part, has justified the troop deployment on the ground to protect the lives of Russian citizens stationed in the peninsula following last week’s overthrow of Russian-backed president Viktor Yanukovych.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel told President Barack Obama by telephone on Sunday she believed Putin, a former KGB colonel, is “in another world,” while Ukraine’s interim Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk warned that the country is “on the brink of disaster.”

Opinion

Ukraine: The Empire strikes back

If the international community allows Russia to partition Ukraine despite the Budapest treaty, it will send a terrible signal.

EU’s €500m gender violence plan falls short, say auditors

The 'Spotlight Initiative' was launched in 2017 with a budget of €500 million to end all forms of violence or harmful practices against women and girls in partner countries, but so far it has had "little impact", say EU auditors.

Latest News

  1. Added-value for Russia diamond ban, as G7 and EU prepare sanctions
  2. EU states to agree on asylum crisis bill, say EU officials
  3. Poland's culture of fear after three years of abortion 'ban'
  4. Time for a reset: EU regional funding needs overhauling
  5. Germany tightens police checks on Czech and Polish border
  6. EU Ombudsman warns of 'new normal' of crisis decision-making
  7. How do you make embarrassing EU documents 'disappear'?
  8. Resurgent Fico hopes for Slovak comeback at Saturday's election

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. International Medical Devices Regulators Forum (IMDRF)Join regulators, industry & healthcare experts at the 24th IMDRF session, September 25-26, Berlin. Register by 20 Sept to join in person or online.
  2. UNOPSUNOPS begins works under EU-funded project to repair schools in Ukraine
  3. Georgia Ministry of Foreign AffairsGeorgia effectively prevents sanctions evasion against Russia – confirm EU, UK, USA
  4. International Medical Devices Regulators Forum (IMDRF)Join regulators & industry experts at the 24th IMDRF session- Berlin September 25-26. Register early for discounted hotel rates
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersGlobal interest in the new Nordic Nutrition Recommendations – here are the speakers for the launch
  6. Nordic Council of Ministers20 June: Launch of the new Nordic Nutrition Recommendations

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. International Sustainable Finance CentreJoin CEE Sustainable Finance Summit, 15 – 19 May 2023, high-level event for finance & business
  2. ICLEISeven actionable measures to make food procurement in Europe more sustainable
  3. World BankWorld Bank Report Highlights Role of Human Development for a Successful Green Transition in Europe
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic summit to step up the fight against food loss and waste
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersThink-tank: Strengthen co-operation around tech giants’ influence in the Nordics
  6. EFBWWEFBWW calls for the EC to stop exploitation in subcontracting chains

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us