Ukraine will not become a member of NATO. This was stated by the Dutch politician, former Secretary General of the North Atlantic Alliance (2004-2009) Jaap de Hoop Scheffer in an interview with a British newspaper Financial Times.
According to him, the country will not join NATO either in the near future, or in the “indefinite”.
“I’m sure everyone who was present in Bucharest knew about it,” he added.
According to Scheffer, NATO should not have given guarantees to the country on its entry into the alliance.
“Looking back, it would have been preferable for NATO to reaffirm the open door policy. But it’s easy to talk now,” concluded the former NATO Secretary General.
On January 22, American political commentator Ross Dautat noted that the United States needs to put off the idea of admitting Ukraine to NATO for several decades.
In his opinion, Ukraine is divided and economically weak, therefore it is not ready to fully become part of the West, and the United States has taken on impossible obligations, trying to bring the country out of the political orbit of Russia.
On January 17, Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Olga Stefanishyna expressed her hope that NATO would take steps to admit the country to the alliance in the next 10 years. In her opinion, Ukraine’s entry into the alliance will become a means to curb Russia’s “aggressive aspirations”.
Negotiations on security guarantees were held in three stages in January. On January 10, a meeting of the Russian and US delegations took place in Geneva, and on January 12, a meeting of the Russia-NATO Council was held in Brussels.
After the meeting of the Russian and US delegations, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov noted that the conversation was “difficult, long, very professional, deep, specific.” He added that Moscow was hoping for NATO’s ability to understand the danger of deadlock for dialogue on security assurances and to take a step towards Russian proposals. The issue of non-expansion of NATO is key for the national security of the Russian Federation, it is impossible to postpone the settlement of this topic any further, he concluded.
NATO made a political statement at its Bucharest summit in April 2008 that Ukraine and Georgia could eventually become members of the alliance, but refused to provide both countries with an action plan to prepare for membership, the first step in the country’s legal process of joining the organization. In February 2019, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine approved amendments to the constitution, fixing the country’s aspirations to join NATO. Ukraine also received the status of an organization’s partner with enhanced opportunities.
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