Statement by James Joye Townsend, President of the Atlantic Treaty Association, on Russia’s attack on Ukraine.
I, as President of the Atlantic Treaty Association, with the full support of the ATA Bureau after today’s special meeting, firmly condemn the brutal attack upon the sovereign nation of Ukraine.
This attack is a clear and flagrant violation of international laws and treaties, including the UN Charter, the Helsinki Final Act, the Charter of Paris, the Budapest Memorandum, and the NATO-Russia Founding Act.
This unprecedented act of aggression by the Russian Federation, with the full support of Belarus, violates Ukraine’s territorial integrity. It is a shameful return to an era of war and destruction on the European continent, which threatens the fundamental security of the EuroAtlantic region. It is utterly without justification.
I am sure our governments can rely on their national ATA bodies – dedicated to building public support for NATO – to support their firm condemnations of the ongoing violent attacks and their calls for an immediate cessation of military hostilities against civilian and military targets.
Through consultations under Article 4 of the Washington Treaty allies should seek preventive, proportionate and non-escalatory measures. Our alliance’s commitment to Article 5 of the Washington Treaty is an iron-clad commitment to defend each other and our common values, our citizens, and our societies.
I am sure that all ATA national bodies in member and partner countries will join me in declaring support and solidarity with the people of Ukraine and with Ukrainian civil society.
As the Secretary General of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg stated, “this is the most dangerous moment in European Security for a Generation”. We must all in the Euro Atlantic community stand united and voice our condemnation of brutal acts of force and transgression.
Brussels, 24 February 2022.