February 29
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Ukraine will become a member of NATO, announced the latter’s Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, The Guardian reported.

“Allies agree that Ukraine will become a member of NATO. At [the NATO-Ukraine] meeting, we will agree recommendations for Ukrainians … reforms, as we continue to support Kyiv on this path to NATO membership,” Stoltenberg said.  

However, all allies still agree that full membership remains impossible in the midst of war, even while ways to move Ukraine and NATO closer continue, he added.

This month Germany and the Netherlands pledged €10bn for Ukraine, he added. Romania added a F16 training centre for Ukrainian pilots. Allies including the US and Finland are sending more air defenses and ammunition to protect Ukrainian cities.

Stoltenberg added that Sweden’s pending NATO membership “will make us all safer,” and he called on Turkey and Hungary to complete its ratifications.

The NATO Secretary General said that Ukraine will be free to negotiate whatever peace it wishes to agree with Russia, when and if the time comes for peace talks.

“Our responsibility is to support Ukraine and to enable them to liberate as much land as possible and to put them in the best possible place, when or if negotiations may start.

“Wars are by nature unpredictable. We have seen no sign that president Putin is planning for a peace, he is actually planning for more war. So what we do know is that the more military support we provide to Ukraine, the stronger their position will be on the battlefield and the stronger their position will be on a potential negotiating table,” Stoltenberg said.  

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