In a joint statement, the leaders of the alliance strongly condemned the Russian invasion and called President Vladimir Putin’s move a “threatening strategic mistake.” “This long-planned attack on Ukraine, an independent, peaceful and democratic country, is brutal and completely unprovoked and unjustifiable,” the 30 NATO leaders agreed.
According to Fiala, the NATO summit unequivocally confirmed the will of the Alliance member states to support Ukraine as much as possible and to make it clear to Russia that its aggression against Ukraine is not acceptable. According to the Prime Minister, the Czech Republic must look for allies so that sanctions against Russia go even further than they do now.
The Czech prime minister said that the member states at the summit expressed their determination to resolutely defend their territory should its security be endangered. The meeting also expressed a determined intention to strengthen NATO’s eastern wing. According to Fiala, the Czechia is ready to participate in such a process after the activation of the relevant NATO plans. He recalled that the government on Friday approved the possibility of sending up to 580 troops involved in NATO’s very rapid reaction forces to any Alliance territory.
“We will make all the deployments necessary to ensure a strong and reliable deterrence and defense of the entire alliance,” the heads of state said in a statement. “The Allies are firmly committed to continuing to provide support (Ukraine),” said NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg after the talks, according to which several countries have announced that they will supply weapons to Ukraine – including key anti-aircraft systems. Several Member States, including the USA, Britain, Poland and the Czech Republic, have promised to deliver arms or ammunition to Kiev in recent weeks.
On Friday, US President Joe Biden and other Alliance leaders sought a way to ensure the security of states close to Russia in particular. “I have ordered the deployment of additional forces to increase ours (military, editor’s note) capacities in Europe and supported our allies in NATO, “said Biden after the talks. But he did not mention how many more American troops he would send to Europe. He also said that Putin had failed to divide the Western Allies and that NATO was keeping its policy open.
Prime Minister Fiala said that Milos Zeman had supported sanctions against Russia and supported their tightening, including cutting Russia off the (interbank) SWIFT system. “Many countries have emphasized the need to continue sanctions, some have mentioned the SWIFT system, which is important. I think that the Czech Republic and like-minded states must look for as many allies as possible in order to go even further in sanctions, “he added.
Sweden and Finland also took part in the summit
According to Fiala, the Allies also had a clear belief in the need to strengthen defense funding, especially in NATO countries. He reminded that the Czech government has committed itself to spending two percent of GDP on defense by 2025.
The Prime Minister appreciated that even states that are further away from Russia are aware of the need for joint defense in the event of a threat to a member state. According to Fiala, all NATO member states attended the summit, the European Union was also represented, and Sweden and Finland were invited to deepen cooperation with the Alliance.
Fiala reminded that the Czech Republic normally represents Zeman at NATO summits. “Mr. President invited me to do so, among other things, in order to show the clear unity of the Czech political representation in these difficult times, our unification on the need to support Ukraine and the impossibility of giving way to the aggression of the Vladimir Putin regime,” he said.
Germany will send troops to Slovakia
Later on Friday evening, in an interview with ZDF television, German Minister of Defense Christine Lambrecht stated that Germany would send troops to Slovakia as part of the strengthening of NATO’s eastern wing defense.
She also said that Germany would help Slovaks protect the airspace. According to information from the DPA agency, the Patriot missile system will be deployed in Slovakia, which provides protection against air and missile strikes.
Following the summit, France announced that it would send four Mirage 2000 fighters and another 200 troops to Estonia, and that it would also strengthen NATO troops in Romania by 500 troops. This was stated by the Reuters agency with reference to the Elysee Palace.