Ukraine Seeks More Arms, Closer Ties to West After Taking Ground From Russia

KHARKIV, Ukraine—Ukrainian forces looked to maximize gains from a lightning-quick offensive in the country’s northeastern Kharkiv region, making a diplomatic push for more weapons and deeper security ties with Western allies.

A top aide to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Anders Fogh Rasmussen, former chief of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, said Tuesday they were drafting a proposal to shore up ties between Kyiv and its Western allies with the aim of guaranteeing the flow of weapons, intelligence, financial aid and training to the country. The document, they said, won’t include a commitment similar to Article 5 of the NATO alliance, which requires allies to intervene militarily if a member is attacked. Instead, the officials said the document is modeled on guarantees between the U.S. and Israel, which ensures the flow of support is steady and unwavering.

Dmitry Medvedev, deputy chairman of the Russian Security Council, said if the West keeps sending weapons to Ukraine, “sooner or later the military campaign will move to another level.”

The diplomacy shows how Kyiv is trying to leverage its recent gains on the battlefield to deepen ties with its Western backers. Ukraine was under pressure to show tangible signs of progress before the onset of cooler temperatures, when dwindling supplies of Russian natural gas will test Europe’s economy and political unity.
Ukraine protest by Yohan Marion is licensed under Unsplash