Ukraine’s membership in NATO, no decision on timetable

Vilnius, Lithuania

The NATO summit began in Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania. No deadline has been set for the inclusion of Ukraine in the alliance on the first day of the conference. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Tuesday that the allies had agreed on a package to “bring Ukraine closer to NATO”. However, he clarified that the invitation to Ukraine to join the coalition will be issued only when all allies agree and conditions are met.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky tweeted, “It is absurd that no deadline has been set for Ukraine’s membership. While nothing is clear about the ‘conditions’ for inviting Ukraine.” He will attend the opening meeting of the new NATO-Ukraine Council on Wednesday. NATO members are at odds over how to bring Ukraine closer to their bloc. According to some reports, some Eastern European members are pressing when Ukraine will be included, but the US and Germany have not said anything yet.

Stoltenberg said NATO leaders had also approved “the most comprehensive defence plans since the end of the Cold War” and endorsed a new defence action plan, Xinhua news agency reported. Under the new plans, NATO aims to have 300,000 troops fully ready. NATO allies have also made a “permanent commitment” to invest at least two per cent of their gross domestic product annually in defence, though after “nine consecutive years of increases in defense spending” since 2014, among the alliance’s 31 members, Only 11 have done so.

Critics argue that this kind of militarization will promote an arms race between member states and will not use resources for social and economic development, which will harm the quality of life of citizens. “What we’re seeing is a massive militarism that doesn’t care about the consequences of the other side,” said Oberg, director of the Transnational Foundation for Peace and Future Research. Analysts have also warned that the expansion of NATO and its responses to the Ukraine issue could pose a serious threat to global security.

Sevim Dagdalen, a member of the lower house of the German Parliament, recently told Xinhua News Agency in an interview that NATO is not a defence alliance, although Western leaders have consistently said the same. At the same time, the military alliance is engaged in an aggressive weapons campaign and is thwarting all negotiation efforts regarding the Ukraine crisis. He accused NATO of waging a proxy war against Russia by supplying military aid to Ukraine. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Tuesday accused NATO of treating Russia like an “enemy.” Local media quoted Peskov as saying, “We are talking about a summit of an association that has a clearly anti-Russian nature.” He said that Moscow has seen the expansion of NATO towards its borders, and the West does not understand the risks of this expansion. Ahead of the two-day summit, protests against NATO are taking place in several European countries.

NATONATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization)no decision on timetableRussia Ukraine WarUkraineUkraine's membership in NATO