Breaking News


NATO Pledges Support for Ukraine’s Path to Membership and Additional Aid

Washington DC, July 11, 2024, The Europe Today: NATO members have committed to an “irreversible path” for Ukraine’s future membership while pledging further aid to support the country. Although a formal timeline for Ukraine’s accession was not established at the summit in Washington DC, the alliance’s 32 members expressed their “unwavering” support for Ukraine’s war efforts.

In a significant move, NATO announced enhanced military integration with Ukraine, and member countries committed €40 billion ($43.3 billion, £33.7 billion) in aid over the next year. This support includes F-16 fighter jets and air defense assistance. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg emphasized, “Support to Ukraine is not charity – it is in our own security interest.”

The ongoing invasion of Ukraine dominated discussions at the summit, with the declaration labeling Russia as the “most significant and direct threat” to security. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken confirmed that US-built F-16 jets are being transferred to Ukraine from Denmark and the Netherlands, marking the first time Ukraine will receive these advanced aircraft.

NATO members also agreed to establish a new unit to coordinate military aid and training for the Ukrainian army, deepening the alliance’s ties with Ukraine. The joint statement highlighted Ukraine’s “concrete progress” on necessary democratic, economic, and security reforms, indicating that a formal membership invitation would be extended once conditions are met.

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

The declaration also accused China of being a “decisive enabler” for Russia’s war against Ukraine, prompting a stern response from Beijing’s mission to the EU, which urged NATO to “stop hyping up the so-called China threat.”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky attended the NATO summit and met with global leaders, including UK Prime Minister Sir Keir Starmer, who assured him of continued support for Ukraine. Zelensky also engaged with US politicians from both major parties to reinforce bipartisan support for Ukraine following a delay in a significant military aid package earlier this year.

Despite hopes that the summit would demonstrate a unified front on Ukraine, there may be some disappointment in Kyiv over the lack of a clear timeline for full NATO membership. The summit, marking NATO’s 75th anniversary, took place ahead of a crucial US election that could see NATO critic Donald Trump return to the White House and amid political challenges for President Joe Biden.

Responding to questions about US domestic politics, Stoltenberg maintained that NATO’s success hinges on staying out of internal political debates. President Biden reaffirmed his support for Ukraine and called for increased defense investment from other NATO members, emphasizing that “We can and will defend every inch of NATO territory.”