RIGA - NATO must provide systemic and long-term support to Ukraine, President Edgars Rinkevics said Thursday during a meeting with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg in Brussels.
As Rinkevics' communications advisor Martins Dregeris informed LETA, the meeting between the Latvian president and the NATO chief focused on the strengthening of NATO's Eastern flank, preparations for NATO's upcoming summit in Washington in 2024, support to Ukraine and Ukraine's integration into NATO.
The Latvian president noted the importance of the implementation of the decisions agreed at the NATO summits in Madrid and Vilnius, especially those concerning deterrence and defense.
Rinkevics said that Russia is and will continue to be the most serious and direct threats to the Alliance's security, which is why it is essential to implement the decisions and regional defense plans agreed at NATO's Madrid and Vinius summits, bolstering the Alliance's deterrence capabilities and ensuring the defense of NATO member states' territory from the first centimeter.
"Latvia, as a host country, is doing everything to provide the best possible conditions for its allies, as well as constantly invests in and strengthens its defense capabilities. It is important that NATO provides maximum support, especially in strengthening air defense capabilities," Rinkevics said.
The president stressed the need for NATO to provide systemic and long-term support to Ukraine and expressed support for closer integration of Ukraine into NATO. Rinkevics noted the importance of Sweden's accession to NATO, expressing the hope that the ratification process of Sweden's NATO membership application will be concluded soon.