Estonian ForMin secgen in Rome: We will support Ukraine to its victory

  • 2023-09-15
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN - Jonatan Vseviov, secretary general of the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was on a visit to Rome on Sept. 13 and 14 September, where he said that the war in Ukraine can only end on Ukraine’s terms and added that Estonia will support Ukraine to its victory.

Vseviov met with his Italian counterpart Riccardo Guariglia, gave a presentation at a meeting with Senate members chaired by the chairman of the committee for European Union policies Giulio Terzi di Sant’Agata and chair of the foreign affairs and defense committee Stefania Craxi and met with head of the government's department of information for security Elisabetta Belloni.

The meetings focused on bilateral relations, security and defense cooperation, and Russia’s aggression in Ukraine. Secretary General Vseviov said that the war in Ukraine can only end on Ukraine’s terms, in respect of the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. Just as is stated in the 10-point peace plan of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

"The goal of Europe is clear and it is to help Ukraine win, and support it for as long as necessary," Vseviov said. "We will not stop or tire of sending a clear message to Russia that its cruelty and inhuman aggression will not subjugate Europe nor Ukraine, which stands at the heart of Europe."

The meetings also covered the new, 12th package of EU sanctions against Russia, including more efficient prevention of the circumvention of sanctions.

Speaking about holding Russia and its leadership accountable for its crime of aggression and war crimes, Vseviov underlined that we are at a decisive point in time.

"We are living in a historic moment when the world and its leaders have a chance to take a bold step, and bring accountability to the troika that has committed genocide and continues to bomb civilians. We can set a precedent and restore international morale and order," he said, adding that this can only be achieved with an internationally mandated special tribunal.

Continued support to Ukraine on its path to the European Union and NATO was also on the agenda. Vseviov said he hopes that Ukraine, which has made great progress in meeting the seven conditions set by the EU, will be invited to accession negotiations before the end of the year. He said that Russia’s aggression has demonstrated that grey areas in Europe would only increase instability.

"NATO membership is the only long-term security guarantee for Ukraine," Vseviov said. "Let us respect that."

Vseviov said that Estonia highly appreciates Italy’s leading role in engaging with global partners, including its cooperation with Tunisia, and asked about ways in which Estonia could increase its contribution. 

Vseviov also spoke at a roundtable on the future of European security, hosted by the Istituto Affari Internazionali think tank.