Duda says Ukraine's accession to NATO can be launched before the end of the war
Until the war with Russia is over, Ukraine will not be able to become a full member of NATO. However, the accession procedure could be started right now.
This was stated by Polish President Andrzej Duda after a meeting in Davos, Switzerland, with his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky, the Polish Presidential Office reports. Receiving an invitation from the Alliance now, in the midst of hostilities, is important for the morale of Ukrainian soldiers, according to the Polish president.
Duda emphasized that Ukraine should "strive for full membership in NATO," even if this goal is unlikely to be achieved before the war with Russia ends. However, the Polish president is convinced that the accession process should be started now.
"During the war, this (accession - Ed.) is impossible, but I believe that Ukraine should receive an invitation to join NATO, which would start the process of discussing this issue in individual national parliaments of the Alliance member states. This process can continue, it is extremely important for the morale of Ukraine's defenders," Duda's office quoted him as saying.
The Polish president is convinced that not only Ukraine will benefit from joining NATO, as a new member with such a tremendous combat experience will strengthen the Alliance. Ukraine's membership in NATO is also very important for Poland's security, Duda said.
The Polish president also said that he and Zelensky had discussed "the current situation at the front and socially" in Davos, as well as Poland's foreign policy in the context of Russian aggression against Ukraine.
"I assured President Volodymyr Zelensky that this policy will be stable and that it will continue to be a policy of support for Ukraine, that he can safely start talks with Prime Minister Donald Tusk in Kyiv in just a few days... I believe that this will be a good policy that we can pursue together, the prime minister, the government, and the president," Duda emphasized.
As reported earlier, Zelensky and Duda coordinated their positions on the eve of the NATO summit on January 16 in Davos.
The 75th anniversary summit of NATO leaders will be held on July 9-11, 2024 in Washington, DC. Kyiv hopes that at this meeting, the leaders of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization will offer a "clear path" to Ukraine's membership.
"We would like to see a real step from NATO countries that brings Ukraine closer to the Alliance. So that there is no stagnation. I want it to be a successful and powerful summit (NATO in Washington), and I want NATO countries to show that they are not afraid of Russia," Zelensky recently described his expectations for the upcoming summit.
Meanwhile, the newly appointed head of the Polish government, Donald Tusk, is planning to visit Ukraine. According to his announced agenda, in Kyiv, the Polish prime minister plans to discuss both the situation at the front and the "pathological situation at the border" related to the protests of Polish farmers.