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German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock announced an additional contribution of 11.5 million euros ($12.5 million) to the Ukraine-NATO Target Fund on Nov. 29.
The Ukraine-NATO Council would be a “force bringing Ukraine closer to NATO,” Baerbock said, quoted by the German Foreign Affairs Ministry’s press service.
“The NATO-Ukraine Council will be the driving force bringing Ukraine closer to NATO. NATO standards, capability planning, and military reform are central to this path,” said Baerbock.
“Germany is contributing an additional 11.5 million euros to the NATO-Ukraine Trust Fund for this purpose.”
She is concerned about the public’s diminishing focus on Russia’s war against Ukraine, saying, “The attacks from Russia on civilian infrastructure are as severe as ever. Therefore, we all must work to continue extending the winter protective shield for Ukraine.”
The first meeting of the Ukraine-NATO Council at the level of foreign ministers concluded in Brussels on Nov. 29.
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg announced an "ambitious" work program for the next year during the meeting.
“We are now transforming NATO’s comprehensive assistance package into a multi-year program of assistance, helping Ukraine transition from Soviet-era to NATO equipment and standards and make their forces fully interoperable with ours,” he added.
The inaugural session of the Ukraine-NATO Council took place in the summer of 2023 during the Vilnius NATO Summit. It was established as a “new joint body, where allies and Ukraine sit as equal members to advance political dialogue, participation, cooperation, and Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic aspirations towards NATO membership.”
Since then, the Council convened twice: at the ambassadorial level in July and again in October.
Following the Vilnius Summit, member state leaders announced that Ukraine would receive an invitation to NATO when agreed upon by the allies and “conditions are met.”
It was also agreed that Ukraine could join NATO without the NATO Membership Action Plan.
Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine