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What will happen to Ukraine’s NATO membership at the Vilnius Summit?

The leaders of the 31 member countries of the NATO begin this Tuesday their two-day summit in Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, with the backdrop of establishing a roadmap for the entry of Ukraine in the Alliance, something that will not be in the short term, as the president of the USAJoe Biden, in an interview with CNN.

In addition, the other stumbling block that has to be resolved in the appointment is the opposition of Türkiye for a “soon” entry of Sweden in the NATO.

LOOK: Why Ukraine’s counteroffensive is not moving as fast as Zelensky and NATO hoped

As to Ukrainethe United States and other allies such as Germany have already ruled out that Vilnius send out a formal invitation to Ukraine for your admission to the NATO.

Before traveling to Europe, Biden told CNN that Ukraine is not yet ready for NATO membership. In addition, he clarified that for this to happen he must first end the war with Russia.

US President Joe Biden walks from Marine One to board Air Force One at Stansted Airport in London on July 10, 2023. (Photo by ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS / AFP) (ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/)

I don’t think there is unanimity in the NATO about whether or not to include Ukraine in the NATO family now, at this moment, in the middle of a war.” said Biden. “For example, if we do that, then, you know, and I mean it, we will be determined to compromise every inch of NATO territory. It’s a commitment we’ve all made no matter what. If the war continues, then we will all be at war. We will be at war with Russia, if that were the case.”

Biden added that USA and their allies in the NATO will continue to support the president Volodymyr Zelensky and security for their forces by sending the weapons they need.

“I think we have to design a rational path for Ukraine to qualify to join NATO,” Biden said.

The President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskywill be present at the summit of Vilnius which will take place on July 11 and 12.

Meanwhile, from Russia the Kremlin warned that consider the possible entry of Ukraine into NATO as a danger and will react in a “sufficiently understandable and firm” way.

The membership of Ukraine in the NATO “It will have extremely serious consequences for the entire security architecture in Europe, which is already deteriorating,” spokesman Dmitri Peskov said at a press conference.

NATO countries.  (AFP).

NATO countries. (AFP).

Because USA and powers like Germany do not support an abbreviated entry of Ukraine in the NATO? It’s basically because if Ukraine is admitted to the Alliance in the middle of the war, this would imply making NATO a direct part of that war.

Thus, the decision to admit Ukraine will activate the old promise of the NATO in the sense that an attack on one member of the Alliance is an attack on all.

“It would also commit future Western leaders to go to war with Russiawhich has nuclear weapons, and could risk World War III if the Kremlin attacked their neighbor again.” notes a CNN analysis.

US forces at a military exercise in Romania.  (AP).

US forces at a military exercise in Romania. (AP).

The same analysis indicates that supporters of the entry of Ukraine in the NATO argue that decades of security and territorial integrity provided to former Warsaw Pact nations like Poland, Hungary and Romania are proof that once under the mutual defense umbrella of the NATOUkraine would finally be safe from further Russian incursions.

“The argument is especially resonant given that the host of the summit, Lithuanialike its neighboring Baltic states Latvia and Estonia, was once annexed by the Soviet Union and considered highly vulnerable to Russia before joining NATO in 2004.”says CNN.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg attends a joint press conference with the Lithuanian president on the summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, on July 10, 2023. (EFE/EPA/FILIP CANTANTE).

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg attends a joint press conference with the Lithuanian president on the summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, on July 10, 2023. (EFE/EPA/FILIP CANTANTE).

A few weeks ago, the NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenbergtraveled to Germany and to meet with the chancellor Olaf Schölz. At the meeting, the leader of the Alliance said that the formal invitation to Ukraine will not be “on the table” at the summit of Vilniussomething with which Berlin coincided.

While this Monday, stoltenberg He affirmed that the allies are studying reducing the accession process from two to a single step Ukraine.

It is about removing the Membership Action Plan (MAP)Stoltenberg said.

“We are now discussing these elements and this package and also finalizing discussions and negotiations on the precise language. I’m not going to go into detail about what the allies are agreeing to.”commented stoltenberg.

As there is no consensus for the abbreviated entry of Ukraine in the NATOLithuania, the other Baltic countries such as Estonia and Latvia, as well as Poland, believe that kyiv must be given concrete “security guarantees”. These measures must go beyond the commitment to continue providing military, financial and humanitarian aid for the duration of the war.

A woman walks past a NATO poster at the NATO summit venue in Vilnius, Lithuania, on July 9, 2023. (EFE/EPA/FILIP SINGER).

A woman walks past a NATO poster at the NATO summit venue in Vilnius, Lithuania, on July 9, 2023. (EFE/EPA/FILIP SINGER). (PHILIP SINGER/)

The EFE agency details that these guarantees raised by the aforementioned countries must be established in the third work meeting of the summit, on Wednesday, in which the formation of the so-called NATO-Ukraine Council. It is expected that Zelensky go to that meeting.

The goal of NATO-Ukraine Council It will be to “elevate” the Alliance’s ties with kyiv through a forum that will meet four times a year and prepare the way for the country’s future entry into the organization, EFE indicated.

“Ukraine and many NATO allies are calling for a clearer path, a road map, some kind of statement in Vilnius to show Ukraine what it has to do to join the Alliance. And I think it’s very important that that happens for the alliance to have credibility. Given what is at stake in the war, (…) given what the Ukrainians have suffered, if we get out of Vilnius without a firmer idea of ​​what it takes to make Ukraine join the Alliance, I am concerned about the credibility of the Alliance”Chris Skaluba, director of the Transatlantic Security Initiative at the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security, told CNN.

but what did he say Zelensky? In an interview with ABC News on Sunday, the president of Ukraine advanced that he will not be a “for fun” NATO summit guest. He asked for more clarity on his country’s entry and security guarantees.

“It would be an important message to say that NATO is not afraid of Russia,” manifested.

Defense spending of NATO countries.  (AFP).

Defense spending of NATO countries. (AFP).

Ukraine expressed for the first time his intention to enter the NATO In 2008, during a meeting held in BucharestRomania.

At that summit, the leaders of the countries of the NATO they refused to give Ukraine the status of official candidate, despite the “strong support” of then-President of the United States, George W. Bush.

The organization only promised to welcome them in the long run.

In 2014, after the annexation of crimea by Russia, Ukraine relaunched its accession process to the NATOwhich had been interrupted in 2010 by the then pro-Russian government Viktor Yanukovych.

In response, the then Secretary General of the NATOAnders Fogh Rasmussen, left the door open for the entry of Ukrainebut did not announce concrete steps to make it happen.

In February 2022, after the Russian invasion of Ukraine began, President Zelensky called for “unrestricted military assistance” from the countries of the NATOwhich responded by sending arms and ammunition.

Months later, on September 30, 2022, after the Russian annexation of four Ukrainian regions, Zelensky called for a “fast-track” NATO accession process. The allies replied that it was impossible.

And in May of this year, Zelensky He admitted that his country’s entry into NATO is “impossible” before the end of the war, but asked for a “clear signal” so that Ukraine may join the Alliance in the future.

So the summit of Vilnius represents a key opportunity to take concrete steps towards the goal of Ukraine raised 15 years ago.

Source: Elcomercio

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