The Secretary General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) Jens Stoltenberg announced that Ukraine will be joining the alliance after it concludes its war with Russia.
“Allies agree that Ukraine will become a member of NATO. At our meeting, we will agree [to] recommendations for Ukraine’s priority reforms as we continue to support Kyiv on its path to NATO membership,” Stoltenberg said at a press conference.
When Ukraine joins NATO, it will be part of the Article 5 protections that bring all members to war if one of them is attacked.
“All Allies agree that in the midst of a war full membership is not possible. But of course, we will continue to look into to address how we can move Ukraine and NATO even closer together as we prepare for the Washington Summit,” Stoltenberg added.
In July, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky said it was “unprecedented and absurd” that NATO could not provide a timeline for membership.
He expressed his dissatisfaction via Twitter stating, “It’s unprecedented and absurd when a time frame is set neither for the invitation nor for Ukraine’s membership.”
He further added, “While at the same time, vague wording about ‘conditions’ is added even for inviting Ukraine. It seems there is no readiness to invite Ukraine to NATO or to make it a member of the Alliance.”
Responding to Zelenskyy’s concerns, Stoltenberg stated that Ukraine’s primary focus should be on winning the war, explaining, “[U]nless Ukraine prevails there is no membership to be discussed at all.”
After Stoltenberg said in April that “Ukraine’s future is in the Euro-Atlantic family, and all NATO allies have agreed that Ukraine will become a NATO member,” Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán tweeted, “What?!”
What?! https://t.co/j3mJojHHOl— Orbán Viktor (@PM_ViktorOrban) April 21, 2023