Ukraine Will Not Join NATO, Zelensky Says

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on March 15 that his country should accept that it will not become a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

“Ukraine is not a member of NATO. We understand that. We have heard for years that the doors were open, but we also heard that we could not join. It’s a truth and it must be recognized,” Zelensky said in a video message to the United Kingdom-led Joint Expeditionary Force.

Zelensky’s statements mark the first time he has conceded that Ukraine will not join the 30-member military alliance.

In response, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s official spokesperson said, “What’s important is for the Ukrainian government to decide what they think is suitable. They should have no decisions imposed upon them.”

Before Russian President Vladimir Putin sent his troops to invade Ukraine over two weeks ago, he demanded assurance that Ukraine would not join NATO. He has repeated the demand amid the invasion.

However, Zelensky also said that security guarantees from NATO allies would be necessary  for Ukrainian forces to defend against Russian aggression.

Ukraine has consistently asked for help from United States-led NATO during the war, notably calling for the implementation of imposing a no-fly zone.

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