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US considers withdrawing Ukraine's NATO invitation

US considers withdrawing Ukraine's NATO invitation United States President Joe Biden (Getty Images)
Author: RBC Ukraine

According to The Washington Post, during the NATO summit in Vilnius, the United States discussed the possibility of revoking Ukraine's invitation to join the Alliance due to President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's social media post criticizing Western countries' indecisiveness.

Sources revealed that following Zelenskyy's statement, diplomats, ministers, and other high-ranking politicians engaged in unofficial discussions on how the Alliance should respond. US officials raised the issue of "reviewing or closing" the matter concerning Ukraine's invitation to NATO.

"One option was to remove the reference to 'invitation' or find another place for the word," said an unnamed NATO diplomat involved in the negotiations.

Another high-ranking Alliance diplomat stated that the US delegation "did not want to deliberately remove the promise" to invite Ukraine. Eventually, a consensus was reached that editing the document would lead to its delayed publication, and it was decided to adhere to the original wording as it was developed initially.

According to the publication, French President Emmanuel Macron, supported by Central European and Baltic countries, insisted on preserving the original formulation.

According to WP's sources, "by the time NATO envoys officially discussed how to respond to Zelenskyy's tweet, the US had returned to the initial formulation of the communiqué."

Zelenskyy's criticism

On the first day of the NATO summit on July 11, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy strongly addressed NATO members regarding their stance on his country. As Kyiv received signals that allies were discussing the wording of the summit without Ukraine's involvement in the sidelines.

"We value our allies. We value our shared security. And we always appreciate an open conversation. Ukraine will be represented in Vilnius, at the NATO summit. Because that is respect. But Ukraine also deserves respect. On the way to Vilnius, we received signals that discussions were being held without Ukraine's involvement," Zelenskyy wrote on social media.

The President emphasized that this wording only pertained to the invitation and not Ukraine's membership.

"It is unprecedented and absurd when there are no time frames for either an invitation (!) or Ukraine's membership; and instead, some strange wording about 'conditions' is added even for Ukraine's invitation..." Zelenskyy underscored.

According to the head of state, it appears that allies are not ready to either invite Ukraine to NATO or grant it membership.

"Thus, the possibility remains to negotiate Ukraine's NATO membership with Russia. And for Russia, this means motivation to continue its terror. Uncertainty is weakness. And I will openly discuss this at the summit," Zelenskyy concluded.

NATO summit in Vilnius

The NATO summit of member countries took place in Vilnius on July 11-12. Ukraine was one of the main topics of discussion. Member countries of the North Atlantic Alliance agreed on a joint communiqué aimed at advancing Ukraine's integration, which means:

  • A multi-year assistance program for Ukraine.
  • The establishment of the Ukraine-NATO Council.
  • Lifting the requirement for the fulfillment of the Membership Action Plan.

However, NATO countries did not extend an invitation to Ukraine to join the Alliance until it fulfills a set of conditions.

Furthermore, leaders of the G7 countries agreed on a new declaration regarding security assurances for Ukraine. The G7 promises long-term support for our country in terms of security and the economy.