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No Plans for Formally Inviting Ukraine to Join NATO

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Monday said there are no plans to issue a formal invitation to Ukraine to join the military alliance when allies meet at their next summit in July.

“We are not discussing the issue of a formal invitation. What we are discussing is how to move Ukraine closer to NATO and there are ongoing consultations and I am not in a position to preempt the outcome of those consultations,” Stoltenberg told a joint news conference with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Berlin.

“The Vilnius summit in July will set out a vision for Ukraine’s future as an independent democratic member of the Euro-Atlantic family,” he added.



Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has pressed for a "clear" decision on Ukraine's path to NATO accession at the next month's summit, otherwise, he sees no point in attending it.

Stoltenberg stressed that allies would again “reiterate their strong support for Ukraine” in its war with Russia.



Meanwhile, the German chancellor made clear again that “NATO would not become party” to the Ukraine war, which broke out last year in February.

“We should be prepared that the Russian war of aggression may take a long time. We are preparing for that and we adapted our policies accordingly. Germany is going to support Ukraine as long as it is necessary,” Scholz said. ​​​​​​​

Stoltenberg and Scholz’s talks in Berlin focused on preparations for the NATO summit in Vilnius.

Last week, ahead of NATO defense ministers in Brussels, Zelensky said in an interview with NBC News, "We understand that tomorrow we will not be members of NATO. But we need an invitation, and it needs to be clear that after this war, if we are ready, and if the Ukraine army is ready to NATO standards, then after the war we will be invited to join."

He added, "It’s very important to hear the truth and not tell us lies."

Stoltenberg's message on Monday clearly is an answer to the Ukrainian President's wish. NATO will not invite Ukraine until the Ukraine - Russia war ends. (AA - NBC News)


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