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Ukrainians must accept we can’t join NATO, says Zelenskyy

  President Volodymyr Zelenskyy says Ukraine must recognise that it cannot be a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).  ...

 


President Volodymyr Zelenskyy says Ukraine must recognise that it cannot be a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).

 

Speaking during a video conference with the UK-led joint expeditionary force on Tuesday, Zelenskyy said it is a truth that must be recognised by the Ukrainian people.

 

“Ukraine is not a member of NATO. We understand that. We have heard for years that the doors were open, but we also heard that we could not join. It’s a truth and it must be recognised,” Zelensky said.

 

“I am glad that our people are beginning to understand this and rely on themselves and the partners who are helping us.”

 

Part of Russia’s demands on Ukraine is for the country not to be a member of NATO.

 

Since the invasion of Ukraine by the Russian army, NATO allies have sent military equipment, financial assistance, and humanitarian aid to support Ukraine in its defence against Russia.

 

The alliance, however, ruled out sending troops to Ukraine,  saying such a move would “trigger direct confrontation with Russia”.

 

US President Joe Biden had warned that a “NATO-Russia confrontation might lead to World War III”.

 

Although Zelenskyy had asked for the closing of its airspace to Russia to protect Ukrainian civilians, NATO ruled out such a move.

 

NATO had said taking such an action could result in a “full-fledged war in Europe involving many more countries”.

 

DEMANDS FOR CEASEFIRE AS NEGOTIATION CONTINUES

Negotiations between Ukraine and Russia are expected to continue as the Russian troops press in on Kyiv, the country’s capital.

 

On Monday, Russia told Ukraine it is ready to halt military operations “in a moment” if it meets a list of its conditions.

 

Dmitry Peskov, Kremlin’s spokesman, had said Moscow was demanding that Ukraine cease its military action, amend its constitution to enshrine neutrality, and reject plans to enter any bloc; recognise Crimea as Russian territory, and the separatist republics of Donetsk and Lugansk as independent states.

 

“We really are finishing the demilitarisation of Ukraine. We will finish it. But the main thing is that Ukraine ceases its military action. They should stop their military action and then no one will shoot,” he added.

 

After the last meeting between the two countries, Zelenskyy had said Russia’s demands are becoming “more realistic”, adding that more time is needed for ”the talks”.

 

“The meetings continue, and, I am informed, the positions during the negotiations already sound more realistic,” he said.

 

“Efforts are still needed, patience is needed. Any war ends with an agreement.”

 

The Ukrainian president also appealed for more weapons and sanctions on Russia.

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