site.btaNATO Deputy Secretary Geoana: NATO Welcome Bulgarian Parliament's Decision to Step Up Support for Ukraine
In a BTA interview, NATO Deputy Secretary General Mircea Geoana said that NATO welcomes the fact that Bulgarian Parliament has decided to step up its support for Ukraine. Geoana spoke to BTA following the meeting of foreign ministers of the Alliance member states, which is taking place in the Romanian capital of Bucharest. In his words, Bulgaria, Romania, Turkiye, along with Ukraine and Georgia, will find balance in the Black Sea region under the NATO umbrella.
He said what is happening in Ukraine has an impact on the whole of Europe, including the Black Sea region. The fact that the foreign ministers' meeting is taking place in Bucharest is a sign of how important the Black Sea region is for NATO. "It is also a sign of how important it is to continue helping Ukraine to prevail in the bloody war that Russia started against them," Geoana told BTA. There will be an additional non-lethal support for Ukraine, including anti-drone systems, heating generators, among other things that are of urgent need now there, he added.
In his words, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has raised the issue on the need for the allies to synchronize and coordinate their air and missile defence support for Ukraine with energy support. "The number one problem now is air missile defence and restoring energy capacity for Ukraine. This is the number one message coming from Bucharest", Geoana emphasized. He added that the decisions of NATO members regarding Ukraine are being taken on a national level, and it is not NATO who decides on behalf of the allies.
Asked if he expects Bulgaria, Romania and Turkiye to find balance in the Black Sea region, the NATO Deputy Secretary General said: "The big problem in the Black Sea is Russia. We [have] three allies, two very important partners in the Black Sea and I am convinced that together with our Turkish allies, together with the rest of the Alliance, we will find the right balance when the time comes", Geoana said.
NATO appreciates Turkiye's efforts regarding the Black Sea grain deal and the swap of prisoners between Ukraine and Russia. "Turkiye is also playing an important role as a warden of the Bosporus strait, making sure that no additional Russian vessels are coming to the Black Sea", NATO Deputy Secretary General noted.
Commenting on Ukraine's perspectives to become a NATO member anytime soon, Geoana said that 14 years ago, in Bucharest, NATO leaders made a commitment that Ukraine and Georgia will become members of the Alliance one day. This commitment is enshrined in the Washington Treaty, so there is a perspective for Ukraine to join NATO when it meets the accession conditions, he also said.