Ukraine decision must be agreed by all member countries, says NATO chief

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A decision on Ukraine’s fast-track membership application to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) must be agreed by all NATO allies, NATO secretary general Jens Stoltenberg said on Sunday.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced on Friday that Ukraine was applying “under an accelerated procedure” to become a member of the security alliance.

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“NATO has an open-door policy and every nation, including of course Ukraine as well, has the right to choose its own path, including the type of security agreement it wants to be a part of,” Stoltenberg said when asked about Ukraine’s candidacy in an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press”.

But, he added, “at the same time, any decision on membership must be taken by consensus, all 30 allies must agree.” The secretary-general said that the “top priority” among NATO allies was “to support Ukraine”.

Presidents of 9 NATO countries support membership

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The presidents of nine Central and Eastern European NATO countries issued a joint statement on Sunday condemning Russia’s annexation of Ukrainian territories and urging NATO to significantly increase military assistance to Ukraine.

The statement notes that the leaders of those countries “visited Kiev during the war and witnessed with their own eyes the effects of Russian aggression.”

“We reiterate our support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. We do not and will never recognize Russian attempts to annex any Ukrainian territory,” the statement said.

The presidents of the Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Poland, Slovakia and Romania expressed their strong support for the “2008 Bucharest NATO Summit decision on Ukraine’s future membership of the Alliance”.

“We support Ukraine in its defense against Russian invasion, demand that Russia immediately withdraw from all occupied territories, and encourage all Allies to substantially increase their military aid to Ukraine,” the statement continued.

The statement also called for “all those who commit crimes of aggression” to be held accountable and brought to justice.

Source: CNN Brasil

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