US President Joe Biden arrived in the United Kingdom on Sunday, kicking off a three-nation trip dominated by a NATO meeting in Lithuania aimed at displaying sympathy with Ukraine in its battle against Russia while not yet admitting Kyiv as a member of the alliance.
However, the difficulties of establishing solidarity among NATO’s 31 member countries were emphasised in a phone chat between Biden and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan before the alliance summit in Lithuania this week, with Sweden’s application for membership in the Western alliance still a source of dispute.
In a CNN interview before Biden’s trip, the US President counselled caution on Ukraine’s push to join NATO, warning the union may be pushed into a war with Russia due to NATO’s mutual defence treaty.
“I don’t think there is unanimity in NATO about whether or not to bring Ukraine into the NATO family now, at this moment, in the middle of a war,”US President Joe Biden
Zelenskyy’s position on NATO membership
According to Ukraine’s President Zelenskyy, inviting Ukraine to join NATO would convey that the Western defence alliance is not afraid of Moscow.
Ukraine should have unambiguous security guarantees while it is not a member of NATO. Zelenskyy stated in an interview that this would be one of his aims at the Vilnius summit.
“I’ll be there, and I’ll be doing whatever I can to, so to speak, expedite that solution, to have an agreement with our partners,” Zelenskiy said on ABC’s “This Week.”