Ukraine's application to join NATO catches Biden administration off guard – Politico

1 October 2022, 10:52 AM
The application for joining NATO was signed by Ukraine on September 30 (Photo:Office of the President)

The application for joining NATO was signed by Ukraine on September 30 (Photo:Office of the President)

Ukraine's announcement that it wants to join NATO via a fast-track accession process caught U.S. President Joe Biden's administration off guard, U.S. news outlet Politico has reported, citing two U.S. officials privy to internal White House discussions.

Ukraine’s announcement has not met with much enthusiasm in Washington: In response to Kyiv's fast-track application for NATO membership, Jake Sullivan, the U.S. President's National Security Advisor, said that it was “not the right time” for Ukraine’s admission to the alliance. He said he believes the best way to help Ukraine is to provide practical assistance “on the ground.”

Video of day

And it wasn’t just the White House that apparently didn’t know what Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy was planning – the U.S. Congress seems to have been in the dark too.

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, when asked whether she supports Ukraine's accession to NATO, avoided a direct answer, Politico said. Instead, she reaffirmed her support for “security guarantees” for Kyiv.

“We are deeply committed to promoting democracy in Ukraine. Let's win this battle. However, I would prefer they have the security guarantees,” Pelosi said.

Meanwhile, in Kyiv, Mykhailo Podolyak, an advisor to the Office of the Ukrainian President, said Ukraine had consulted with NATO before applying for membership.

Ukraine is applying for NATO membership on a fast-track accession, according to President Zelenskyy said in a surprise announcement on Sept. 30.

He said that during the negotiations on Ukraine's accession, the country's partners must come up with security guarantee commitments, as listed in the Kyiv Security Treaty – an earlier-developed plan for Ukraine’s future security.

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Google News

Ukraine Today
Fresh daily newsletter covering the top headlines and developments in Ukraine
Daily at 9am EST
Show more news