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Joe Biden: We need to outline a roadmap for Ukraine’s NATO membership

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NATO has an open-door policy, we will not prohibit anyone from entering, but before joining the Alliance, a qualification process must be completed, said US President Joe Biden, referring to Ukraine’s NATO aspirations. In his opinion, the country is not ready for membership in the North Atlantic Alliance. However, he stressed the need to draw up a “road map” for Kiev.

“I don’t think Ukraine is ready for NATO membership,” he said Joe Biden in an interview with CNN. He stressed that he had spent “a lot of time trying to keep NATO united.” – When Putin launched his offensive and attacked Ukraine, I think he had one goal in mind: to break up NATO. The intelligence specialists assessed it similarly. So maintaining the Alliance is now crucial, he argued.

As he said, he does not believe that there is an agreement among allies to “introduce Ukraine to the NATO family just now, when there is a war going on there.” If we did, we would have to defend every inch of NATO territory no matter what, and that would mean NATO’s war on Russia he noted. “So I think we need to draw a road map for Ukraine’s membership in NATO,” he added.

Biden recalled his meeting with the Russian president in Geneva two years ago. – Putin then demanded a declaration that Ukraine would never be in NATO. I told him I couldn’t promise that. NATO has an open-door policy, we will not ban anyone from entering, but a qualification process must be passed before membership, stressed the American leader.

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“Milestone” on Ukraine’s path to NATO

Joe Biden’s National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said Friday during a White House press briefing that United States support an open NATO door for Ukraine, and although Ukraine will not become a member of the Alliance as a result of the upcoming NATO Summit, “the Vilnius Summit will be an important step on Ukraine’s path to NATO.”

READ MORE: The White House has announced a $800 million aid package for Ukraine. It contains cluster ammunition

“It will indeed be a milestone, but Ukraine still has important steps to take towards becoming a member of NATO,” he said. He added that the conditions of Ukraine’s membership would be an important subject of discussion in Vilnius and expressed hope that the president of Ukraine would come to the summit Volodymyr Zelensky. He also noted that Ukraine will have to undertake reforms and meet a number of conditions in order to become a member of NATO.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg announced on Friday that that the NATO-Ukraine Council will be established at the next week’s summit in Vilnius. The NATO chief said he expects allies to agree to a three-part package to support Ukraine, which is fighting Russia. One of the parts of this package is to be the creation of the said Council. In addition, Stoltenberg assessed that a long-term military support program should be created to bring NATO and Ukrainian forces closer together.

READ MORE: Erdogan: Ukraine deserves NATO membership

As the Norwegian added, the allies are to help in the necessary changes in Ukraine’s security sector and in the health service. “I am convinced that we will find a common way to clarify the issue of (Ukraine’s) membership, but I will not give details, they will be presented at the Vilnius summit,” Stoltenberg said, answering questions from journalists.

Main photo source: PAP/EPA/SHAWN THEW

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