Nato concluded two days of talks between foreign minsters on 4 April 2024, the 75th anniversary of the alliance, welcoming Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba to the proceedings at Nato-Headquarters in Haren, Belgium, weeks after Sweden joined as the thirty-second member of the alliance on 7 March. 

Admiral Bauer, Chair of the Nato Military Committee, stated that across Europe and North America, three and a half million military personnel. “Together, we are protecting much more than physical safety. We are collectively defending freedom and democracy.”

Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg welcomed that Allies continued support to Ukraine, highlighting nearly €600m ($648m) Germany had donated to the Czech-led artillery initiative in recent days, 10,000 UK drones, French missiles and armoured vehicles, and a €188m aid package from Finland announced on 3 April.  

“We need to do even more, and we need to put our support on an even firmer and more enduring basis,” said Stoltenberg, adding that the ministers will go on to discuss further strengthening the support to Ukraine, including creating “a more robust and predictable framework,” for Nato support. 

Ukraine should welcome language for more consistency in military support from the Alliance, as operational decisions for the defence of Ukraine from the full-scale invasion by Russia have been hampered by uncertainly over supply of materiel. At certain points during the conflict, observers have noted that Ukrainian armour has been deployed over-cautiously – to avoid attrition – but at the expense of strategic advantage. At the risk of greater escalation, assuredness in the supply of arms would have positive impact on the effectiveness of assets in the field, but fears of escalation have been overstated in the first two years of the war in Ukraine. 

However, the global implications of the Russian invasion of Ukraine have generated significant consideration over the support from Moscow from China, North Korea, and Iran, with Nato Foreign Ministers, and their counterparts from the Indo-Pacific nations Australia, Japan, New Zealand, and South Korea, discussing how to enhance cooperation in responding to hybrid threats, and approaches to increasing defence industrial production.

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