News from Ukraine: Ukraine and US ink bilateral concept on defence cooperation

18:35 Sep. 8, 2016

Ukraine and US ink bilateral concept on defence cooperation

Ukraine's Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak, right, is greeted by U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter prior to a meeting at NATO headquarters in Brussels on Wednesday, June 15, 2016 (AP Photo)

US remains committed to implementation of Minsk Agreements in support of Ukraine's territorial integrity, Pentagon chief says 

Ukraine's Defence Minister Stepan Poltorak and Pentagon chief Ashton Carter signed a bilateral partner concept in the defence sphere.

US Department of Defence reports, the document was signed as Secretary of Defence Ash Carter met with Ukrainian counterpart Stepan Poltorak for a bilateral meeting at the UN Peacekeeping Defence Ministerial on September 8 in London.

Secretary Carter emphasized that the United States remains committed to the full implementation of the Minsk Agreements in support of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders.

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The document provides a framework for the United States and Ukraine to enhance the defence capacity of Ukraine's forces, advance critical Ukrainian defence reforms, improve resource management processes, and boost defence technology cooperation.

"This partner concept will build on the strong partnership between the U.S. and Ukraine and will enhance the effectiveness of U.S. security assistance efforts", US Department of Defence says.

Secretary Carter also named Gen. John Abizaid (Ret.), former CENTCOM commander, as a senior defence advisor to Ukraine.

Gen. Abizaid will provide authoritative advice to Minister Poltorak and other senior Ukrainian officials as Ukraine aims to implement reforms designed to bring its armed forces in line with Western principles and standards, such as enhancing democratic civilian control of the military, transitioning to a NATO-interoperable staff structure, and combatting corruption", US Department of Defence says.

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Since 2014, the United States has committed more than USD 600 million in security assistance to Ukraine, including training programs to enhance Ukraine's internal defence capabilities, equipment to support the operational needs of Ukraine's security forces, and a robust advisory effort to advance the implementation of key defence reforms., US Department of Defence says.

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