Kiev claims 15 countries ready to invite Ukraine to NATO at Vilnius summit

MOSCOW: At least 15 countries are ready to make a political decision on Kiev's accession to NATO at the Alliance's summit in Vilnius...


MOSCOW: At least 15 countries are ready to make a political decision on Kiev's accession to NATO at the Alliance's summit in Vilnius on July 11-12, Olga Stefanishyna, Ukrainian deputy prime minister for European and Euro-Atlantic integration, says.

"Out of 30 or 31 (NATO member states), the number of countries that clearly understand the need for such a decision is at least 15," she told the RBC-Ukraine news agency, answering a question about how many countries are prepared to meet Kiev's expectations at the summit.

According to her, a decision should be made in Vilnius to extend a formal invitation to Ukraine to become a member of the alliance, with the time frame for accession to be decided later. Stefanishyna believes that all countries of the alliance support Kiev, and "at least half of the allies clearly understand the importance and strategic significance" of the decision to invite Ukraine to NATO at the upcoming summit.

Earlier, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that Ukraine's accession to the organization during the conflict was impossible and that the alliance countries as well as Kiev understood this. According to him, the bloc's summit in Vilnius plans to bring Ukraine closer to the alliance, set up the Ukraine-NATO Council and ensure a multiyear program of military supplies to the Kiev authorities. For his part, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky said that the fact that an invitation to join NATO has not been extended yet demotivates the country's armed forces.

The press secretary of the Russian president, Dmitry Peskov, noted that the statements heard from Kiev about membership in NATO demonstrate the unwillingness and inability of the Ukrainian authorities to resolve the conflict at the negotiating table. He emphasized that Russia would seek to ensure its own security, which rules out NATO expansion via Ukraine's accession and the approach of the alliance toward Russia's borders.


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Local Glob: Kiev claims 15 countries ready to invite Ukraine to NATO at Vilnius summit
Kiev claims 15 countries ready to invite Ukraine to NATO at Vilnius summit
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