Ukrainian specialists will take part in the NATO mission in Iraq and the Maritime Guard operation in the Mediterranean sea, said Yuriy Vasyliev, deputy director of the department, head of the European and Euro-Atlantic integration department of the International Defense Cooperation Department of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry. “Ukraine has been a contributor to international security throughout its years of independence, and we continue, despite the aggression that we have, our contributions to missions and operations under NATO command. Now we have specialists who are in a Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan and in the forces in Kosovo. But taking into account our recent proposals that have been accepted, we are now preparing to send our specialists to another two operations: the NATO mission in Iraq and the Alliance’s operation Maritime Guard,” Vasyliev said at an online conference on Tuesday.
He stressed that the Ukrainian military, hardened in battles to defend independence and territorial integrity, will be participants in these operations.
Vasyliev also pointed out that, given the status of a partner with expanded capabilities, Ukraine will be involved in five NATO exercises, which will be held on the topic of collective defense.
In addition, he noted that work is now underway to increase the level of Ukraine’s representation in the governing bodies and command structures of the Alliance.
“We are entering a new stage and will work this year, hopefully in the second half of the year, to send our civilian representative of the Ministry of Defense as a so-called voluntary national contribution,” Vasyliev explained.
Defense Ministers of Ukraine and Iraq, Andriy Taran and Juma Inad Saadoun Al-Juburi, in Kyiv signed a Memorandum of Understanding in the field of military cooperation between the defense departments of the two countries.
“The signing of the Memorandum will provide an opportunity to continue mutually beneficial cooperation between the defense ministries of the two countries, strengthen partnerships and ensure the implementation of projects in areas that are of mutually beneficial interest,” the press service of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine said.
As noted, on September 3, a delegation of the Iraqi Defense Ministry paid an official visit to Ukraine. This is the first visit of the head of the Iraqi Defense Ministry to Ukraine.
The defense ministers of Ukraine and Iraq held bilateral talks. The parties “emphasized the significant potential of partnership regarding the exchange of experience in the conduct of hostilities, cooperation in the area of military education.”