US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin stressed on Wednesday, that Washington will continue to work closely with its NATO allies to support the Ukrainian people and stand strong against Russia’s brutal and premeditated aggression against Ukraine.
During his visit to Latvia, he added that international efforts to enhance Ukraine’s capabilities continue to make a real difference on the battlefield.
It is worth mentioing that, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said on Wednesday that the Ukraine war should end through negotiations, but on Kyiv’s terms.
Stoltenberg called on Ukraine to prepare for a long war, without answering the question of whether Ukraine would be able to join NATO after that, according to the Russian news agency ‘TASS’.
“We must prepare for a long war, and this is our signal to President Zelensky,” he said.
Moreover, Stoltenberg, the Secretary-General of NATO said that Russia poses a “direct threat” to NATO security.
This statement came during a NATO leaders meeting in Madrid, which seeks to strengthen the alliance’s eastern wing in response to Russia’s operation in Ukraine.
Stoltenberg added that NATO faces its greatest challenge since WW2 due to the war in Ukraine.
“We’ll state clearly that Russia poses a direct threat to our security,” Stoltenberg said, according to AFP.
According to Stoltenberg, the meeting in Madrid was set to be “historic and transformative.”
The secretary-general of the alliance indicated that NATO will agree to deterrence to be able to deploy more combat formations and deploy more pre-existing equipment in Eastern Europe by next year, according to AP.