On his recent visit to Ukraine, U.S. defense secretary William Perry signed with Ukrainian defense minister Valery Shmarov a plan for joint U.S.-Ukrainian military activities in 1996. Among other things, the plan reportedly envisages U.S.-Ukrainian military exercises. Both men spoke of intensive future contacts between their ministries and Shmarov termed the relationship "a long-term partnership." Ukrainian president Leonid Kuchma last week received Perry and visiting Russian defense minister Pavel Grachev both singly and together. During the meetings, Perry proposed the holding of a U.S.-Russian-Ukrainian-Polish military exercise in western Ukraine’s Lviv region this summer. (14). Last year, Ukraine participated in ground force and naval exercises with U.S. forces in the Mykolayv, Lviv, and Carpathian regions, as well as on the Black Sea and in the U.S. Ukraine also took part in multilateral exercises held in other countries under the NATO Partnership for Peace program. Although Ukraine is not a candidate for NATO membership, it took a more active part in such military exercises in 1995 than did other ex-Soviet and East European countries.
Georgia And Azerbaijan Draw Closer Together.