Antonio Costa took over these positions in an interview promoted by the Clube de Jornalistas, in partnership with Agência Lusa and Escola Superior de Comunicação Social, as part of the celebrations of the 50th and 40th anniversary of the 25th of April and the 40th anniversary of the club.
In the first part of the interview, which was devoted to the consequences of Russian military intervention in Ukraine, the chief of the executive branch argued that NATO’s priority is to “strengthen the eastern flank” of Europe, which is why Portugal has already sent troops to Romania. .
He declared that “it is clear in the future that after this war, a new relationship of forces must be established in Europe’s security and defense systems.”
When asked if he would consider returning to the SMO model in Portugal, Antonio Costa dismissed that perspective and
Consider this a “no point of turning back” path.
“The strategic bet made by the state was to strengthen its military capabilities, by improving its equipment, in enhancing the professionalization of its armed forces, taking into account the tasks that we have to perform – tasks in a huge area of the exclusive economic zone. And in the national forces deployed in the service of NATO, the European Union and the nations the United States, or in bilateral partnerships with the member states of the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP),” he said.
At this point, the prime minister said, “there is a commitment to time-bound targets with defense investment up to 2024.”
When asked about the fact that the Ukrainian Head of State, Volodymyr Zelensky, had already considered that Portugal was not an unconditional supporter of Ukraine’s accession to the European Union, Antonio Costa claimed that the accessions “have their own rhythm” and noted that from Portugal to the European Economic Community “it took nine years”.
He answered the question of Ukraine’s accession to the European Union: a union.
For the Prime Minister, it is essential that “the European Council and the European Commission focus on Ukraine’s urgent needs: negotiate now the deepening of the Association Agreement and make a firm commitment to support the brutal efforts to rebuild this country.”
In this interview, Antonio Costa considered that it would be easy for Portugal to defend a position in favor of a comprehensive ban on the purchase of oil and gas from Russia, as called for by the United States, but stressed that this would leave another member. countries in difficulty.
He also refused to point the finger at Germany for being in a position dependent on Russia in the field of energy, citing in this regard, for example, the obstacles raised by France to achieving energy ties with the Iberian Peninsula.