The decision to declare NATO accession as one of Ukraine’s priorities, made by the Verkhovna Rada (parliament), will not change anything, head of the Ukrainian Institute for Analysis and Political Management Ruslan Bortnik told TASS on Thursday.
According to him, Ukraine did not hold consultations with its counterparts before making this decision which was bound to make the western countries laugh.
"Many in the West will laugh at this decision," Bortnik said. "It does not change a thing, its only goal is to imitate parliamentary activity and distract society from other pressing issues, including the lack of hot water, corruption and negative social consequences of reforms," the expert said. According to him, Rada could easily follow this pattern to declare Ukraine’s EU membership and even US membership as a priority goal, while "it can always ignore the West’s opinion."
"Reasonable people usually consult their partners when making such decisions," Bortnik went on to say. "It is obvious that in the next 20 years Ukraine won’t be granted NATO membership because NATO’s regulations prohibit the accession of countries that face unresolved territorial disputes," he added.
On Thursday, the Ukrainian parliament passed a bill declaring NATO accession as a foreign policy priority.
In December 2014, the Rada cancelled Ukraine’s non-aligned status, while President Pyotr Poroshenko said that by 2020, Ukraine should ensure full compatibility of its armed forces with NATO countries’ forces. According to the Ukrainian president, NATO membership is the country’s strategic goal. At the same time, he promised to hold a referendum on joining the alliance.
However, according to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg’s own statement, Ukraine was unlikely to become a member in the near future. Experts believe that even in the next 20 years Ukraine will not be able to qualify for NATO membership.