The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has often voiced its support for Ukraine's territorial integrity, but NATO Secretary General's Cabinet Director Stian Jenssen's statement at a recent event in Norway that "Ukraine could become a NATO member in exchange for giving part of its territory to Russia" caused controversy.
The announcement sparked criticism in Ukraine, which has suffered tens of thousands of casualties in the war with Russia and has part of its territory under occupation.
Commenting on Jenssen's remarks, which were also reported in the Norwegian press, a NATO official said, "NATO's position is clear and unchanged. As NATO leaders reiterated at the Vilnius summit in July, we fully support Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity."
“We will continue to support Ukraine for as long as it takes. We are committed to a just and lasting peace. Ukraine will decide when and on what terms,” the official says.
"It is clear that security arrangements are needed to ensure that war does not recur,” the official added.
According to Norway's Verdens Gang (VG) newspaper, NATO Secretary General Cabinet Director Jenssen said at a panel discussion in Arendal that Ukraine could become a NATO member in exchange for giving part of its territory to Russia.
When asked by VG whether this comment was NATO's view, Jenssen replied, "I'm not saying it should be like this. I'm saying that this could be one of the possible solutions."
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has often reiterated that the Alliance supports Ukraine's territorial integrity, that its membership is only possible after the war, and that Ukraine will decide on the terms of peace.
Source: Anadolu Agency