NATO Aims for Ukraine’s Ability to Deter Future Russian Aggression

The US-led bloc wants Ukraine to “prevail” in the conflict with Russia and fend it off in the future, its secretary general says

NATO, led by the United States, is seeking a lasting solution to the conflict in Ukraine, with Kyiv becoming capable of deterring Moscow after the hostilities end, Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said.

The outgoing NATO chief made these remarks during a press conference on Friday ahead of the bloc’s summit in Washington, scheduled for next week. Sustained support for Ukraine remains the alliance’s most pressing concern, the official said, adding that NATO is committed to continuing its support for Kyiv in the future.

“I expect allies will agree that we must sustain our support, our economic as well as military support—to Ukraine in a way that ensures that Ukraine prevails, that they’re able to defend against Russian aggression today and deter it in the future,” Stoltenberg stated.

The NATO leader also spoke out against a temporary settlement to end the hostilities, citing the 2014–2015 Minsk Agreements, which ultimately failed. The agreement provided a roadmap out of the civil conflict in then-Ukrainian Donbass, but was never implemented by Kyiv.

Stoltenberg squarely blamed the failure of the Minsk Agreements on Russia, despite both Western guarantors and top Ukrainian officials openly admitting that the entire deal was a ruse to buy time and strengthen Kyiv’s armed forces.

“The West agreed to Minsk-2, waited for seven years, and then [Russia] launched a full-scale attack and took even more. We cannot have Minsk-3. What we need now is something that is actually credible, something that actually stops the war and Russia stops its aggression,” he asserted.

Stoltenberg also addressed Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s surprise visit to Moscow to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin, seemingly attempting to downplay its significance.

“Hungary informed us about this upcoming visit. And I expect that when Victor Orban is in Washington at the NATO summit next week, there will be opportunities to discuss and address the discussions he had in Moscow. This is something that takes place on a regular basis between allies,” he said.

The NATO chief also claimed that Hungary, as a member of the alliance, fully agrees with its stance that “Russia is the aggressor and Russia is responsible for the war.” This assessment appears to contradict statements made by Orban and other top Hungarian officials, who have repeatedly suggested that Western “instigators of war” were responsible for igniting and prolonging the hostilities.