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NATO chief visits Kyiv for first time since Russian invasion Lalrp

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KYIV, Ukraine — NATO Secretary-Normal Jens Stoltenberg is visiting Ukraine for the primary time since Russia launched its full-scale invasion greater than a yr in the past, an alliance official stated Thursday.

“The NATO secretary-general is in Ukraine. We are going to launch extra info as quickly as attainable,” stated an alliance official, who requested to not be recognized consistent with NATO procedures.

Footage of Stoltenberg apparently paying tribute to fallen Ukrainian troopers in Kyiv’s St Michael’s Sq. had been revealed by native media.

Other than the necessary symbolism of the go to, the precise objective of Stoltenberg’s journey wasn’t instantly clear. NATO has no official presence in Ukraine. As a company of 31 international locations, it solely offers nonlethal help — turbines, medical tools, tents, navy uniforms and different provides — to the federal government in Kyiv.

Stoltenberg has been the robust voice of the alliance all through the battle and has been instrumental in garnering and coordinating help by the 31 members for Ukraine because the nation sought to carry on to its territory.

Stoltenberg had been to Kyiv earlier than the battle, however that is his first go to in the course of the hostilities and underscores the longstanding commitments of the alliance in protection of Ukraine’s independence.

Earlier this month, Finland joined NATO, dealing a serious blow to Russian President Vladimir Putin with a historic realignment of Europe’s post-Chilly Warfare safety panorama triggered by Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Nordic nation’s membership doubles Russia’s border with the world’s largest safety alliance. Neighboring Sweden is predicted to affix in coming months too, presumably by the point U.S. President Joe Biden and his NATO counterparts meet within the Lithuanian capital Vilnius on July 11-12.

The world’s largest safety alliance has targeted on bolstering defenses by itself territory to dissuade Putin from attacking any member nation. Beneath NATO’s collective safety assure, an assault on one member nation is taken into account to be an assault on all of them.

The U.S. and plenty of different members are offering weapons, ammunition and coaching for Ukraine’s embattled troops bilaterally and in teams, however NATO as a complete desires to keep away from being dragged into any potential battle with nuclear armed Russia.

On Friday, Stoltenberg will attend a Ukraine Protection Contact Group assembly at Ramstein Air Base, Germany.

Lorne Prepare dinner reported from Brussels.