Ukraine's NATO Bid Was Not Discussed in Minsk - Poroshenko
21:10 12.02.2015(updated 21:43 12.02.2015)
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is unhappy that Ukraine's NATO bid was not discussed during the Minsk talks in "Normandy Format".
BRUSSELS (Sputnik) – Kiev's bid to become a NATO member was not on the agenda of the Minsk summit on Ukrainian crisis, President Petro Poroshenko said Thursday.
'We did not have any discussions on NATO [membership],' Poroshenko told reporters before departure from Brussels where he addressed an informal meeting of EU heads of state or government on the results of Minsk peace talks in 'Normandy format.'
The leaders of Ukraine, France, Germany, and Russia held a 13-hour summit in Minsk on Wednesday and early Thursday to hammer a new political deal aimed at stopping the deadly conflict in eastern Ukraine that has claimed lives of at least 5,300 people since April 2014.
Last December, Ukraine abandoned its non-aligned status and resumed its course to join NATO, with President Poroshenko describing the country's neutral status as a strategic mistake. Ukraine now has five to six years to finalize its NATO membership bid.
Ukraine's push to join NATO following the start of the crisis in the southeast prompted a mixed reaction from the military alliance, with the majority of NATO officials saying it was not ready to join the bloc and urging for deeper reforms.
Speaking at last week's security conference in Munich, NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said he strongly believed in partnering non-member countries, but warned that many partnerships never end in memberships.
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