In a briefing to Scandinavian journalists on Saturday April 29, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy believes that NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has changed his attitude, towards Ukraine's membership to NATO, following his recent visit to Kyiv. According to the Head of State, the Secretary General of NATO now fully supports this decision. This was as reported in “European Pravda”.
"Our last meeting with Jens was better than all our other meetings. But again, this is an alliance decision. I think that if the decision to join depended on Stoltenberg, Ukraine would be in NATO... It seems to me that Jens has changed his position. I believe - let him not take offense at me, I have a good relationship with him - that he has become a more decisive person. It is important for us, for the world, and for the Alliance," Zelensky noted.
The President drew attention to the fact that it was not Ukraine that decided not to join NATO, but the alliance countries that did not dare to make a decision at the time.
"It was not our choice not to be in NATO. It was the choice of NATO and the fears of some states, [as to] what would happen if Ukraine was accepted into NATO, how would Russia react. It is not very fair that we have never before been interested in how the people of Ukraine would react, but everyone was only interested in how Russia would react. I believe that this is unfair and dishonest," Zelensky said.
He pointed to the example of Finland, which quickly joined NATO but was not followed by any reaction from the Russians.
"We are glad that Finland is in NATO. And here is the answer: first of all, everyone understood that the best security guarantee is NATO. This is an example, [showing] whether we should be afraid of Russia or not.
“Finland joined NATO, and this once again proves that Russia just wanted to occupy us, not because they were afraid that NATO was approaching their borders," the head of state explained.
Zelensky added that Ukraine did not join the alliance because they did not want to take Ukraine in the past 30 years.
"All these years you did not take us there. Yes, you invited us, but nevertheless ... it cannot be like this in the civilized world that our life depends only on whether we are in NATO or not," the Ukrainian leader remarked.
It should be noted that the NATO Secretary-General visited Ukraine last week for the first time since the beginning of the full-scale invasion of Russia. He held talks with Zelenskyi in Kyiv, and also visited Bucha, which was under Russian occupation.
Stoltenberg said that at the July summit in Vilnius, the member countries of the Alliance are preparing to discuss the issue of Ukraine's membership and security guarantees for it. However, the main issue remains ensuring Ukraine's victory in the war.
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