NATO leaders collectively affirm that ‘Ukraine’s future lies in NATO’ and that its trajectory is ‘irreversible’.

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Heads of state pose for a group photo during a NATO 75th anniversary celebration event on July 10, 2024 in Washington, DC.


NATO leaders on Wednesday collectively pledged that “Ukraine’s future lies in NATO” and that its path is “irreversible.”

Leaders did not provide a specific time frame Ukraine will join the defense alliance. Instead, they said they would “be in a position to invite Ukraine to join the coalition when the coalition agrees and conditions are met.”

“We welcome the concrete progress Ukraine has made since the Vilnius summit in its necessary democratic, economic and security reforms,” ​​the leaders said in a Washington summit declaration issued after a meeting of NATO’s North Atlantic Council.

“As Ukraine continues this important work, we will continue to support it on its irreversible path to full Euro-Atlantic integration, including NATO membership,” the statement said.

The announcement outlined the Alliance’s ongoing support for Kyiv, including new air defense systems for the establishment of NATO Security Assistance and Training for Ukraine (NSATU) and the coordination of NATO security assistance and training to Ukraine by Allies and partners. ”

Washington described Ukraine’s path as “irreversible” after months of diplomatic negotiations before the summit, a point of contention among allies. Before issuing the declaration, some diplomats argued that simply describing the route as “irreversible” was not enough, but that there must be strong support under that description.

The move to NATO-sponsored training and equipment coordination is seen by many as a way to ensure continued support for Kiev in the event of former US President Donald Trump’s re-election. Officials have quietly expressed concern about what a second Trump presidency could mean for the defense alliance and military support for Kiev. Russia’s war in Ukraine Continued with little sign of a military or diplomatic decision.

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There is “growing and understandable skepticism about the future of Western support” for Ukraine, a European diplomat said last week.

NSATU’s mission is to “sustain security assistance to Ukraine and ensure enhanced, predictable and coherent support,” the statement said, noting that it “does not make NATO a party to the conflict, under international law.” .”

“It will support the transformation of Ukraine’s security and defense forces, enabling its further integration with NATO,” the announcement said.

The leaders announced a “commitment of long-term support” to Ukraine, with the aim of “providing a minimum core funding of 40 billion euros by next year, and a sustained level of security assistance to help Ukraine prevail.”

The declaration expressed “deep concern” over the “deepening strategic partnership” between China and Russia and “their mutually reinforcing efforts to undermine and reshape the rules-based international order.”

The declaration calls Beijing “a decisive enabler of Russia’s war against Ukraine through its ‘no limits’ partnership and its large-scale support for Russia’s defense industrial base” and calls on China to “become a permanent member of the United Nations. The Security Council, with specific responsibility, must cease all material and political support for Russia’s war effort.

Echoing growing public concern from the U.S. and European allies about Beijing’s support for Russia’s war in Ukraine, it noted, “China cannot implement the largest war in Europe in recent history without adversely affecting its interests and reputation.” The announcement also said that China “continues to pose systemic challenges to Euro-Atlantic security” through “sustained malicious cyber and hybrid activities, including disinformation”.

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It recognized the Indo-Pacific region as “vital to NATO” but did not recommend a stronger role for the alliance in this area.

“We welcome the continued contributions of our Asia-Pacific partners to Euro-Atlantic security,” it said. “We are strengthening dialogue to address cross-regional challenges and enhancing our practical cooperation, including flagship projects in the fields of supporting Ukraine, cyber security, countering disinformation and technology.”

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