Official sources say Portugal will attend a joint meeting of the United States and 20 countries next Tuesday at the US military base in Rammstein, Germany, to discuss Ukraine’s security needs.
Sources at the National Defense told Lusa Agency this Saturday that Portugal will attend the ministry’s “high-level delegation” with elements, and that Minister Helena Carreras will participate via video conference.
On Friday, Pentagon sources said that US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, who represents the administration led by Joe Biden, will attend the Washington-sponsored meeting.
At least 20 countries have already confirmed their presence, but more participants are expected, a Pentagon spokesman said. John Kirby said the Pentagon had invited 40 countries and was waiting for further confirmations.
Some of the invited countries are NATO, however the meeting did not take place under the auspices of the Atlantic Alliance because it was decided that the organization would not provide military assistance to Ukraine, although its members did so individually, a Pentagon spokesman clarified.
On the agenda will be, among other things, the exchange of information about the Russian invasion of eastern Ukraine.
In addition, he added that the United States and its allies can modernize Ukraine’s armed forces so that they can face any challenge.
Since the start of the Russian invasion on February 24, 30 countries, including the United States and Portugal, have been sending military aid to Ukraine.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zhelensky has called on allies to step up military action and focus on military assistance, as Russian forces have been concentrating their operations in eastern Ukraine in recent weeks.
The Russian invasion has already killed more than 2,000 civilians, and UN figures warn that the actual number could be much higher.
The military offensive has already displaced more than 12 million people, more than 5 million of whom have fled the country, according to the latest UN data – the worst refugee crisis in Europe since World War II (1939-1945).
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