NATO Summit: “Ukraine Invited When Conditions are Right”

Ukraine will have to wait before joining NATO. This followed from the Atlantic Alliance summit in Vilnius. The opportunity is open for Kyiv, but without exact dates, which clearly did not please Volodymyr Zelensky, who would like to hear clearer commitments.

The communiqué at the end of the first working day reads,

“We fully support Ukraine’s right to choose its own security arrangements. Ukraine’s future is in NATO. We reaffirm the commitment we made at the 2008 Summit in Bucharest that Ukraine will become a member of NATO, and today we recognize that Ukraine’s path to full Euro-Atlantic integration has moved beyond the need for the Membership Action Plan.  Ukraine has become increasingly interoperable and politically integrated with the Alliance, and has made substantial progress on its reform path. In line with the 1997 Charter on a Distinctive Partnership between NATO and Ukraine and the 2009 Complement, Allies will continue to support and review Ukraine’s progress on interoperability as well as additional democratic and security sector reforms that are required. NATO Foreign Ministers will regularly assess progress through the adapted Annual National Program. The Alliance will support Ukraine in making these reforms on its path towards future membership. We will be in a position to extend an invitation to Ukraine to join the Alliance when Allies agree and conditions are met.”

During the summit, there was also a meeting held between secretary Jens Stoltenberg, president of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and prime-minister of Sweden Ulf Kristersson. At the end of the meeting, Erdogan lifted the veto on the entry of the Scandinavian country into NATO.