3350 M Street, NW · Washington DC 20007 · 202/333-0606 · 202/333-0817 (fax)

13 July 1998
For immediate release
[Press Releases Home]


On July 9, Ukraine and NATO marked the first anniversary of signing the Charter on a Distinctive Partnership. On that very day Ukraine's Foreign Minister Borys Tarasiuk met with NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana who came to Ukraine on his third visit. In Mr. Tarasiuk’s words, the fostering of relations with NATO is an important aspect of Ukraine's policy aimed at building a new European security architecture. In response, Mr. Solana expressed satisfaction with the dynamic development of Ukrainian-NATO relations. He added that NATO considers these relations as an important factor of European security and stability. The two sides discussed the development of Ukrainian-NATO relations, particularly the results of their 1997-1998 cooperation. They also discussed a broad range of issues involving international and regional security, the practical aspects of the Ukrainian-NATO partnership, and the prospects for further developing cooperation in the areas of science, information, economics, ecology, and military field.


According to DINAU, President Leonid Kuchma commented on his recent meeting in Kiev with visiting NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana referring to the first anniversary of the signing by NATO and Ukraine of the Charter on a Distinctive Partnership as a remarkable event coinciding with the NATO Secretary-General's third visit to Ukraine. Meeting with Ukrainian and foreign media in Kiev President Leonid Kuchma reiterated Ukraine's vision of Europe's emerging new collective security system in which both OSCE and NATO are to be equal partners. The president was greatly pleased with his continued dialogue with the NATO Secretary-General, and stressed that cooperation between Ukraine and NATO will go beyond the Partnership for Peace program. In turn, NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana spoke out in favor of Alliance’s comprehensive, multidimensional, balanced and fruitful cooperation with Ukraine. Ukraine will play a very important role in the process of developing Europe's new security architecture, Mr. Solana said.


As reported by DINAU, NSDC Secretary Volodymyr Horbulin views meeting with visiting NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana as one which has opened new vistas of NATO-Ukrainian cooperation in implementing joint military-technical projects, and made Ukraine better positioned to participate in NATO's program "Science for the Sake of Stability." Ukraine's likely involvement in NATO's military hardware standardization projects will give the nation better access to NATO's state-of-the-art technologies and known-how, and will allow its huge military-industrial complex to undergo defense conversion less painfully. Besides, Ukraine's space rocketry manufacture and its elite brain tank will also benefit from cooperation with NATO, Mr. Horbulin underlined.


The speaker of the Ukrainian parliament, Oleksandr Tkachenko, met on July 9 with visiting NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana, and briefed his guest on the internal situation in Ukraine, which he described as stable and manageable in spite of the existing difficulties. The government and parliament do find common grounds on important issues Mr. Tkachenko added. In his words, positive changes are underway in Ukraine, particularly in economy. He expressed hope that there will also be certain improvements in the industrial sector this year. As disclosed by the Ukrainian speaker, the parliament's immediate task will be to approve the Cabinet of Ministers' action program for stabilizing the economy. He added that the most pressing issues today are the economy and social welfare. During the meeting, the Ukrainian-NATO cooperation was discussed, too. Mr. Solana stressed the importance of strengthening cooperation and security in Europe, adding that Ukraine has a key role to play in this regard. According to him, this is also reflected in Ukrainian-NATO cooperation. The representatives of various parliamentary factions were present at the meeting.


NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana addressed journalists and students of international affairs, after visiting the NATO documentation and information center in Kiev. The first anniversary of the signing of the Ukrainian-NATO distinctive partnership charter was a memorable event, Mr. Solana said, and promised to include it in his memoirs. Mr. Solana underscored that Ukraine has a key role to play in the new Europe. According to him, the signing of the NATO-Ukrainian partnership charter in Madrid last year created a certain structure for new constructive relations between Ukraine and the Alliance. "We will enter the new millennium together," Mr. Solana said. "Stability, security, and consequently prosperity in Europe cannot be achieved without lasting relations between Ukraine and NATO member-nations." Ukraine is a key player in the development of these relations, Mr. Solana noted. NATO member-nations have realized this and seek a new level of cooperation, he said.

A lot has been done in the past year, particularly in cooperation on peacekeeping operations, most specifically in Bosnia-Herzegovina. He added that significant results have been achieved in the planning of actions to be taken in emergency situations. He stated NATO's intention to broaden its cooperation with Ukraine under the Partnership for Peace and Science for Peace programs. Mr. Solana sees great prospects for scientific cooperation between Ukraine and NATO. According to him, Ukraine is NATO's second largest scientific partner. Such cooperation involves 250 Ukrainian scientists and their number will increase, Mr. Solana said. He added that this cooperation would focus on developing and reorienting Ukrainian high technology. Instruments of peace will be made in the factories where rockets were previously made, he said. The NATO Secretary-General also underscored that the opening of NATO information and documentation center in Kiev promoted dialogue and exchange of information between Ukraine and the Alliance. He presented the center's new director, Taras Kuzio. On Russia's stance on Ukrainian-NATO partnership, Mr. Solana said: "We have important relations with Russia and special relations with Ukraine, while Ukraine and Russia have friendly relations, this forming a closed triangle."


NATO Secretary-General visited the Dnipropetrovsk-based Yuzhnyi engineering factory on July 9. During the visit, Mr. Solana expressed his satisfaction that the factory no longer produces the dreaded SS-18 nuclear rockets while the factory's former director now serves as the president of democratic and sovereign Ukraine. According to DINAU, Mr. Solana said the Yuzhnyi factory remained one of the best in the world, only it now uses its wealth of experience for peaceful purposes. He noted that the factory is now involved in joint projects with Norway and the United States, both members of NATO, and also cooperates with Russia in implementing the Sea Lunch project. In Mr. Solana’s opinion, Ukraine’s three major contributions to European security were: its decision to voluntarily relinquish its nuclear weapons, its efforts to maintain friendly relations with its neighbors and other countries in the region, and its decision to build special partnership with NATO. This contribution is especially valuable at a time when nuclear tests by India and Pakistan have aggravated tension in the South Asia. Ukraine demonstrated political maturity by putting the broader interest of European security above the wish to become a new nuclear power, Mr. Solana stressed. The NATO Secretary-General views good relations between Ukraine and Russia as a guarantee of regional stability. He noted the importance of a peaceful settlement of the Black Sea Fleet division and of the issue on the status of Sevastopol, as well as the Ukrainian parliament's ratification of the Ukrainian-Russian Friendship and Cooperation Agreement. He further noted that Ukraine was one of the first nations to open representative offices at the NATO headquarters. In Mr. Solana’s words, NATO and Ukraine made the most important contributions to the transformations that took place in the past ten years. The very fact that a NATO Secretary-General can visit a factory that was previously a top secret facility strengthens his conviction that there must be no off-limit zones in the Europe of the twenty-first century, Mr. Solana underscored. Mr. Solana gave a high appraisal of his meeting with Ukraine's President Kuchma, during which they discussed the four main aspects of Ukrainian-NATO cooperation: the Partnership for Peace program, planning of emergency actions, scientific cooperation, and industrial cooperation. He added that future cooperation plans were also addressed. Over a 40-year period, the Yuzhnyi missile factory produced four generations of strategic rockets, 400 artificial satellites, and rocket launchers. Mr. Solana departed for Brussels after his tour of the factory.


Ukraine's First Deputy Foreign Minister Anton Buteyko said that the CIS should be an active negotiation and consultation mechanism. He made the statement on July 14, while addressing a news briefing at the Foreign Ministry. Ukraine sees the CIS' main task as creating a free trade zone based on the norms and principles of the World Trade Organization and establishing close bilateral and multilateral trade and economic cooperation among member states, Mr. Buteyko said. He also stated Ukraine's views on improving the CIS' structures. According to him, the CIS' four statutory bodies, namely the Council of Heads of State, the Council of Heads of Governments, the International Economic Committee, and the Executive Secretariat, should be retained while all other organs should be scrapped. However, the Executive Secretariat's 1,700-strong staff should either be reduced of taken out of the CIS' jurisdiction. Mr. Buteyko stressed that Ukraine would link its cooperation within the CIS to its proclaimed strategic goal of integration into the European Union and Trans-Atlantic structures. The CIS should not be a closed forum but instead it should promote negotiations with other European, American, and Asian structures, Mr. Buteyko added. According to him, this was Ukraine's position at the second session of the working group on improving the CIS' activities and reforming its structures. He said that Ukraine's stance on these issues was supported by a group of countries, including Moldova and other members of the informal GUAM group. None of the issues raised at the session was finalized, therefore the next session will be held from July 29-31, he said. The participating nations agreed that recommendations on reforming the CIS would be adopted on a basis of consensus. The Ukrainian deputy foreign minister attributed Ukraine's radical position on the CIS to the fact that the current CIS is ineffective. According to him, only 130 out of the 910 documents thus far concluded have been signed by all participating states, and only 30 have thus far been ratified. In Mr. Buteyko’s opinion, this shows low interest in the CIS. According to him, the optimal structure proposed by Ukraine will transform the CIS into an effective forum.

BRAMA Home -- UkraiNEWStand -- Community Press -- Calendar
Advertise on BRAMA -- Search BRAMA
Copyright © 1997-2011 BRAMA, Inc.tm, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright (c)1997-98 BRAMA, Inc.; all rights reserved.