French President Emmanuel Macron said Wednesday that NATO should offer “concrete and tangible security guarantees” to Ukraine as the alliance is debating what to offer Kyiv at a NATO summit that will be held in Vilnius this July.
Macron acknowledged it’s unlikely that Ukraine can obtain full NATO membership, as all 31 members would need to agree, but called for an upgrade to the alliance’s relationship with Kyiv.
“I’m not sure we will have a consensus…for full-fledged membership. Let’s be clear,” Macron said at the GLOBSEC forum in Slovakia, according to Defense One. “I think we have to build something between the security provided to Israel and a full-fledged membership … I think we need to talk concrete and tangible security guarantees.”
Polish President Andrzej Duda recently told The Wall Street Journal that Western leaders are considering an Israel model for Ukraine. That would involve continuing to supply massive amounts of military aid but would not include an Article V-style mutual defense guarantee.
A day earlier at the GLOBSEC conference, a Ukrainian official was calling for NATO to give Kyiv a clear roadmap to membership. Ukraine was promised that it would eventually become a NATO member in 2008 but has never been given a timeline on when that might happen.
The 2008 promise to Ukraine was given despite warnings from the US ambassador to Russia at the time that Ukrainian entry into the alliance was the “brightest of all red lines” for Moscow. Ukrainian neutrality has been a key Russian demand for a settlement, meaning new NATO pledges for Ukraine will likely prolong the war.