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9 NATO countries support Ukraine’s membership

Leaders of nine NATO countries in Europe issued a joint statement on Sunday throwing his support behind a path to membership from Ukraine, which applied to join the military alliance just days earlier.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called on Friday for the country to gain accelerated NATO membership in response to Russia’s annexation of four regions in violation of international law. Ukraine and the West have denounced Russian President Vladimir Putin’s referendums to annex the regions as a farce, his latest move in the months-long war.

A country needs the approval of all 30 members to join NATO, and Ukraine has received mixed responses in the alliance’s past due to its geographic proximity to Russia. Being at war complicates the country’s request to join the military alliance.

The nine NATO countries that have expressed support for Ukraine’s membership are the Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Poland, Romania and Slovakia. All the countries are in Central and Eastern Europe, and could face the next Russian aggression if it is not stopped in Ukraine.

โ€œWe reiterate our support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. We do not and will never recognize Russian attempts to annex any Ukrainian territory,” the statement said. “We strongly support the decision of the 2008 Bucharest NATO Summit on Ukraine’s future membership.”

At the 2008 summit, NATO members welcomed the wishes of Ukraine and Georgia to join the alliance, but refused to provide a clear timeline for the countries’ path to membership. Sunday’s letter also did not provide that timeline, though Zelenskyy thanked the countries for publicly supporting Ukraine to become a member.

Finland and Sweden officially applied to join NATO on the fast track in May due to security concerns following Russia’s invasion. Most of the member countries have already ratified their requests and the two nations are on track to join the alliance.

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan said Friday that the United States has long supported an open-door policy for NATO, but that the application process for Ukraine “should be taken up at another time.”

“At this time, our view is that the best way to support Ukraine is through hands-on support on the ground in Ukraine,” Sullivan said.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg gave a similar response on Sunday, saying Chuck Todd on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that Ukraine has the right to choose what kind of security arrangements it wants to be a part of, but that “any decision on membership must be made by consensus.”

After annexation, the US sanctioned more than 1,000 people and companies linked to Russia’s invasion, including the governor of the Central Bank and the families of members of the National Security Council. Sullivan said sanctions have been a “critical element” in the White House’s strategy against the Putin regime because of the “economic pressure we are putting on Russia and the denial of their ability to put together what they need to be able to regenerate their war”. machines.”


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