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Updated January 8th, 2023 at 13:51 IST

Ukraine fighting against Russia to fulfill NATO's mission, says Defence Min Reznikov

The Ukrainian Defense Minister, Oleksii Reznikov admitted on Thursday that Kyiv is fighting against Russia to fulfill NATO's mission.

Reported by: Amrit Burman
Edited by: Amrit Burman
Ukraine Russia war
Image: AP | Image:self
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The Russia-Ukraine war has descended into its 11th month with no signs of a ceasefire from both sides and the conflict taking a more brutal turn. Ukrainian Defense Minister, Oleksii Reznikov admitted on Thursday that Kyiv is fighting against Russia to fulfill NATO's mission and expects Western nations to supply weapons and ammunition in return.

While speaking to a Ukrainian TV channel, Reznikov said that last year, at the NATO Summit in Madrid, the Bloc had stated that the Russian Federation was a major threat to NATO. He underscored that Ukraine is today eliminating this "threat". He further stated that NATO countries are not shedding their blood; it is Ukrainian soldiers who are shedding their blood, and in return, Ukraine deserves weapons to stand against the oppressor.

'We’re shedding our blood': Kyiv is executing NATO’s Mission against Russia, says  Oleksii Reznikov

"At the NATO Summit in Madrid in June 2022, it was clearly delineated that over the coming decade, the main threat to the alliance would be the Russian Federation. Today, Ukraine is eliminating this threat. We are carrying out NATO’s mission today. They aren’t shedding their blood. We’re shedding ours. That's why they’re required to supply us with weapons," said Reznikov, according to Sputnik.

The Ukrainian official further mentioned that western partners have constantly been reminded that "Ukraine is standing like a real shield and is defending the entire civilised world, the entire West," from Russia. The Ukrainian defence official further stated that he was absolutely certain that Ukraine would become a member of NATO.

"Ukraine is convinced that this is an absolutely realistic possibility. Of course, they won’t accept this political decision via consensus before our victory. This is clear. But after the victory, after all this ends and some kind of peace arrives, NATO countries, first and foremost, will be interested in the construction of this security architecture. They have seen their own weak spots; they have seen who is strong and powerful. Today they are teaching us, but tomorrow our officers, sergeants, and even privates will be teaching them how to fight the Russians. Russia remains one of the threats to NATO, and for Europe as a whole," he remarked. 

Ukraine 'already de facto member of NATO,' says Kyiv Defence Chief

According to a Sputnik report, the Defence Minister further claimed that Ukraine is "already de facto a member of NATO" in terms of complying with many of the alliance’s standards, including "civilian-democratic control" of the military, "transparent and clear" systems in weapons purchases and logistics, and "planning joint operations."

This development came after US White House Spokesperson Karine Jean-Pierre announced on Friday another military aid package of $3 billion, making it the first military aid since the year 2023 started. Recently, Pierre announced that $682 million of the package will be allocated to assist European partners to reinforce NATO's presence in the eastern flank and $ 225 million to rebuild the military capabilities of Ukraine. It is worth noting here that the latest military aid provided by Ukraine will include at least 50 Bradley fighting vehicles, 500 TOW anti-tank missiles, and 250,000 rounds of 22 mm ammunition.

Image: AP

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Published January 8th, 2023 at 13:51 IST

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