Following, Russia’s illegal annexation of four Ukrainian regions, Ukraine is formally applying for NATO membership via an “accelerated procedure”. The following announcement has been made by the President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on his Telegram channel on Friday.
President Zelenskyy’s video announcement on social media, which was confirmed by Defence Minister of Ukraine on Twitter, is a countermove following Putin signed documents to officially annex the four occupied Ukrainian territories of Donetsk, Kherson, Luhansk and Zaporizhzhia.
Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy said, “De facto, we have already found our way into NATO. De Facto, we have already proved that we are compatible with the alliance’s norms. We are already helping and protecting each other in practice. Today, Ukraine is making an application to formalize that as well. We are taking the decisive step by signing Ukraine’s application for accelerated accession to NATO.”
The move is especially symbolic as one of the arguments for the start of what Russia is still calling its “special military operation” in Ukraine, which posed a threat to Russian security, as per Russian authorities.
President Zelenskyy on Friday has said that Ukraine will liberate its entire territory, including the Crimea peninsula, which was also annexed by Russia in 2014 under a similar strategy of military occupation followed by a forced and illegal referendum.
Zelenskyy added that he no longer wants to negotiate with Putin. “We have always taken a leading role in negotiations. However, it is clear that that is no longer possible with the current president; he does not know what dignity and honesty is. We are open to dialogue with Russia, but with a different president.”