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NATO-Ukraine Charter

Fact sheet released by the Bureau of European and Canadian Affairs, U.S. Department of State, June 19, 1997.

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The development of a strong, enduring relationship between NATO and Ukraine is an important aspect of the emerging European security architecture. The maintenance of Ukraine's independence, territorial integrity, sovereignty and integration into Euro-Atlantic institutions is a crucial factor for stability and security in Central Europe and the continent as a whole. The signing of a NATO-Ukraine Charter represents an important step towards President Clinton's goal of an undivided Europe.

The Charter

The Charter provides a framework for an open-ended NATO-Ukraine relationship through consultation and cooperation on issues of common interest. Ukraine has been an active participant in NATO's Partnership for Peace, as reflected in its willingness to host and participate in a range of PFP exercises and activities. The Charter seeks to build on the achievements, strength and breadth of NATO-Ukraine cooperation, supporting important initiatives such as the Poland-Ukraine Battalion, the creation of a crisis consultation mechanism and ensuring the full development of the EAPC and enhanced PFP. The Charter contains five sections:

I. Describes the context for an enhanced NATO-Ukraine relationship. It commits NATO and Ukraine to further broaden and strengthen their cooperation and to develop a distinctive and effective relationship which promotes further stability in Central Europe and the continent as a whole.

II. Details the principles on which NATO and Ukraine will base their relationship, including the recognition that the security of all states in the OSCE area is indivisible. It affirms common respect for the sovereignty, territorial integrity, and political independence of all states.

III. Lists areas for consultation and cooperation between NATO and Ukraine, including NATO-Ukraine military cooperation and interoperability, civil emergency planning, environmental security issues, and support for Ukrainian defense reform and the Poland-Ukraine Battalion.

IV. Outlines practical arrangements for consultation and cooperation between NATO and Ukraine. These include the NATO-Ukraine Commission, meetings of the North Atlantic Council and NATO committees with Ukraine, high level visits, and establishment of a Ukrainian military liaison mission in Brussels.

V. References security assurances the five nuclear powers provided Ukraine when it acceded to the NPT, commits NATO and Ukraine to cooperate on CFE adaptation and to develop a crisis consultative mechanism.

Security Mechanisms

The Charter provides for development of a crisis consultation mechanism and for consultation whenever Ukraine perceives a direct threat to its territorial integrity, political independence or security and "welcomes and supports the fact that Ukraine received security assurances from all five nuclear weapons states parties to the NPT." However, only NATO members are entitled to Article V security guarantees under the Washington Treaty.

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