During the speech at the International Conference “The Hybrid War Decade: Lessons Learned to Move Forward Successfully”, President Petro Poroshenko noted that the aggressive actions of the Russian Federation against Ukraine pose a threat to the entire European continent. The Head of State especially emphasized that Ukraine has now become the eastern flank of NATO in defending European, democratic values.
The Head of State thanked the organizers for holding the conference in Kyiv: "I understand well why it is being held here. Being at the cutting edge of the Russian hybrid war, Ukraine has a great deal of experience that can be shared with our partners".
The President also noted that although the words "hybrid war" were included in our lexicon only 4.5 years ago, in 2008, the events in Georgia were of the same series. "We demonstrated solidarity with Georgia, we demonstrated that this is an extremely important issue for us. But the reaction of the world was not enough to stop the aggression. And if we had acted decisively in 2008, it might not have happened in 2014," he said.
"At the same time, I would like to thank the whole world for the prompt creation of the world coalition in support of Ukraine and in countering Russian aggression," the President said.
According to the Head of State, over the years, Ukraine has studied very well the "habits of the Russian bear". "We know very well how Russia takes off a mask and becomes a clear, not a hidden enemy. When a hybrid war demonstrates that this is a real war. If you are ready to defend yourself - ask us, Ukrainians, how to do it," Petro Poroshenko added.
"Information attacks, attempts to destabilize the situation inside the country, energy blackmail, complete embargo and closure of markets, aggressive imposition of its agenda through agents of influence, through agents in political, cultural and social spheres, incitement of social conflicts, a very important component of the hybrid war - influence through religious organizations is not a complete Moscow’s toolkit, which finally received the name of the hybrid," the President named the means of Russian aggression.
"Today, there are fortunately no people who will deny that the revanchist policy of the Kremlin against Ukraine has become a common challenge for Euro-Atlantic security. As well as the fact that without a strong Ukraine, which has already turned into a de-facto eastern flank of NATO, there can be no discussion of a stable Euro-Atlantic space," Petro Poroshenko said.
According to him, Russia, being obsessed with its geopolitical ideas, is grinding technologies today in the occupied Donbas and in the illegally annexed Crimea that go far beyond Ukraine and threaten not only Ukraine. "The occupied Crimea became the base for Russian cruise missiles. Where are they going next, will they only fly to Ukraine? Or to Syria? Or to the countries of the Mediterranean Sea in order to outline Russian influence zone, control zone there?" the President noted.
"Don’t we know that modern Russian weapons are tested in Donbas? The methods of propaganda coverage of regular troops are being improved in Donbas. Tens of thousands of fighters of the so-called private armies were used in Donbas. Are they private? They are recruited through the system of Russian army, funded at the expense of the state budget and integrated with regular army fighters. The Ukrainian secret services detect numerous propagandists sponsored by Russia with their calls from within the country to overthrow the constitutional order," the Head of State also noted.
"We need to learn to counteract this," he especially emphasized, adding: "Remember, the Sea of Azov has always been a symbol of peace, there were no grounds for any conflicts. And now, the Sea of Azov is full of warships, the system of blockade of Ukrainian seaports is being developed there. They are trying to stop the work of Mariupol, Berdiansk, stop the work of the steel industry of Ukraine, stop exports. What right do they have? I am convinced that not only this technology will be applied to Ukrainian ports".