“NATO Chief Warns of Prolonged Conflict in Ukraine, Emphasizes Preparedness”

NATO Chief Warns of Prolonged Conflict in Ukraine

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has issued a sobering warning, indicating that the conflict in Ukraine is unlikely to conclude swiftly, underscoring the need for sustained preparations. In an interview with Germany’s Funke media group, Stoltenberg acknowledged the desire for a rapid resolution but cautioned against unrealistic expectations.

“Most wars last longer than expected when they first begin,” Stoltenberg noted, emphasizing the necessity of bracing for an extended duration of the Ukraine war. This caution comes as Kyiv persists with its counteroffensive against Russia, an operation launched in June.

The conflict initially erupted in February 2022 when Moscow dispatched its forces into Ukraine, marking a return of war to Europe after a lengthy period of relative stability.

Kyiv’s counteroffensive, initiated in June, has sought to push back against entrenched Russian positions in the southern and eastern regions of Ukraine. However, progress has been modest, and the conflict continues to exact a toll on both sides.

“We are all wishing for a quick peace,” Stoltenberg expressed, acknowledging the universal hope for a resolution to the crisis. He also stressed the grim reality that if President Volodymyr Zelensky and the Ukrainians were to cease their defense, their country’s existence would be at stake. Similarly, he highlighted that if President Vladimir Putin and Russia were to lay down their weapons, peace could be attainable.

Regarding Ukraine’s aspirations to join the NATO alliance, Stoltenberg asserted, “There is no doubt that Ukraine will eventually be in NATO.” He pointed out that Kyiv had made progress toward NATO membership during a summit of the alliance held in July.

Stoltenberg emphasized the importance of providing security guarantees for Ukraine once the conflict concludes. He warned that without such assurances, history might repeat itself, alluding to the ongoing regional tensions and the need to secure peace.

At the July summit in Vilnius, NATO leaders agreed that Ukraine could join the alliance once specific conditions are met. U.S. and German officials clarified that these prerequisites would entail Kyiv implementing reforms to safeguard democracy and the rule of law.

As the situation in Ukraine unfolds, NATO remains a key player in supporting the country’s defense and long-term security prospects while navigating the complexities of the ongoing conflict.

Sources By Agencies

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