Ukraine is set to welcome Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on July 10th. The visit coincides with the 20th anniversary of the distinctive partnership between NATO and Ukraine and high ranked officials hope it will provide an opportunity to discuss Ukraine’s prospects of joining the Alliance.
In an exclusive interview for Euronews, the Head of the Ukrainian Parliament Andriy Parubiy stressed that in June Ukrainian MPs adopted a draft law that sets membership of the Alliance as a priority for the country. On the July 6th, the bill was signed by Petro Poroshenko. Now Ukraine needs to step-up its reforms to comply with NATO standards
“The Ukrainian army is becoming one of the most powerful armies in the region,” he explains. “Moreover, the army has real combat experience, the experience of modern warfare which means the Ukrainian army is capable of defending not only the Ukrainian border, but also the eastern border of NATO, and the eastern border of the entire free world.”
But experts are not so optimistic about prospects of joining Nato. Oleksandr Sushko, Research Director of the Institute for Euro-Atlantic Сooperation, says even receiving a Membership Action Plan is a long-term outlook for Ukraine mainly because of the ongoing military conflict with Russia.