G7 Countries Vow Long-Term Military Support for Ukraine

It's not clear what the commitments will involve as each country will negotiate a bilateral agreement with Ukraine

President Biden and other Group of Seven leaders on Wednesday pledged long-term support for Ukraine and announced that they would each negotiate a bilateral security deal with Kyiv.

“Today we are launching negotiations with Ukraine to formalize — through bilateral security commitments and arrangements aligned with this multilateral framework, in accordance with our respective legal and constitutional requirements — our enduring support to Ukraine,” the G7 said in a joint statement.

The G7 said each member will “work with Ukraine on specific, bilateral, long-term security commitments and arrangements.” The G7 includes the US, Italy, Japan, France, Germany, Britain, Canada, and the EU.

The statement said the bilateral security deals will include more military aid, training, intelligence sharing, cyber cooperation, and support for Ukraine’s military-industrial complex.

President Biden recently floated the idea that the US could support Ukraine the same way it backs Israel, which includes a long-term commitment to billions in military aid each year but no mutual defense guarantees. However, he suggested such an arrangement could only happen after the war between Ukraine and Russia is over.

The G7 pledges fell far short of what Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was hoping to get out of the two-day NATO summit in Vilnius. NATO’s communique issued on Tuesday offered no invitation for Ukraine to join the alliance or a clear timeline on when Kyiv’s membership could happen, which Zelensky called “absurd.”

On Wednesday, Zelensky said the G7 commitments could not be a substitute for NATO membership. “We can state that the results of this summit are good, but should we receive an invitation, then that would be the optimum,” Zelensky said. “The best guarantee for Ukraine is to be in NATO.”

The White House has said that Ukraine joining NATO would put the US in a war with Russia, which could quickly turn nuclear. Despite recognizing that reality, the Biden administration continues to escalate its support for Ukraine, and each step brings the US and Russia closer to a direct clash.

President Biden delivered a speech at the end of the summit in Lithuania, vowing to continue backing Ukraine in what appears to be an open-ended conflict. “Our commitment to Ukraine will not weaken. We will stand for freedom today, tomorrow and for as long as it takes,” he said.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of Antiwar.com, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.