NATO Defense Ministers are meeting in Brussels on 14-15 February 2023 to “strengthen the Alliance’s deterrence and defense, and step up and sustain for Ukraine,” according to the NATO website.
Previewing the meeting on 13 February, NATO’s Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg noted the urgency of delivering key capabilities to Ukraine before Russia can seize the initiative on the battlefield:
“We are in a race of logistics,” he said, stressing that “speed will save lives.”
According to the report, the NATO defense ministers are expected to “agree a new level of ambition for NATO defense planning, and address ways to increase defense industrial capacity and replenish stockpiles. They will also take steps to increase the protection of critical undersea infrastructure and discuss ways to maintain and step up defense spending across the Alliance.”
Reuters says NATO is expected to ask its members to raise its ammunition stockpiles which have been badly depleted by the war in Ukraine, as allies try to put arms supplies to Kyiv and their own militaries on a sustainable footing after a year in crisis mode.
Stoltenberg also said he expected the issue of fighter jets for Ukraine to be discussed at the upcoming two-day meeting of NATO defense ministers. Stoltenberg stressed that NATO countries supplying fighter jets to Ukraine would not make NATO part of the conflict.
“We see no sign whatsoever that [Russian] President Putin is preparing for peace … What we see is president Putin and Russia still wanting to control Ukraine,” Jens Stoltenberg told reporters at a news conference in Brussels, according to Aljazeera, adding that “We see how they are sending more troops, more weapons, more capabilities.”