Pentagon Chief Outlines What Is to Be Discussed during Ramstein-Format Meeting

Thursday, 15 June 2023

Pentagon Chief Lloyd Austin has outlined the main issues to be considered during the Ramstein meeting on 15 June.

According to the correspondent of European Pravda from Brussels, Austin, opening a meeting at NATO headquarters in the Belgian capital, stressed that the participants of the Ramstein-format meeting continue their efforts to protect Ukrainian citizens from Russian air strikes. He mentioned the Patriot, IRIS-T, and NASAMS air defence systems already delivered to Kyiv.

"I have asked that the members of this contact group continue to work to provide Ukraine with the air defence assets and ammunition that is essential to protect its citizens," he said.

Furthermore, the meeting will focus on the training of Ukrainian pilots on Western fighter jets.

"During our last meeting, we announced a new initiative led by the Netherlands and Denmark to train Ukrainian pilots on fourth-generation fighter aircraft, including the F-16s... We look forward to hearing more about your progress today," Austin said.

Additionally, Germany and Poland will inform their partners about the next steps in the key task of supporting and maintaining Ukrainian Leopard tanks, the Pentagon chief added.

A separate issue will be to ensure that the Ukrainian Armed Forces are able to defend Ukraine against Russian aggression in the future.

"It is becoming increasingly clear that Ukraine needs a force that is mutually compatible with our military. So today we will hear from US Commander Cavoli (Supreme Allied Commander Europe – ed.) and some of our colleagues about future training plans and our work to support that," Austin added.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that amid Ukraine's counter-offensive, the allies will focus on ensuring the functioning of the delivered weapon systems during the Ramstein meeting on 15 June.

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