BERLIN, January 8. /TASS/. In the long term Ukraine may apply for admission to NATO, but only on the condition such is the will of the Ukrainian people, Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk said in front of an audience in the building of the German Foreign Policy Society on Thursday.
He recalled that Ukraine had already cancelled its non-aligned status, which he described as the first step towards NATO membership.
“In the second move we are to implement the reforms to achieve NATO and EU standards,” Yatsenyuk said, adding that he was referring in the first place to reorganization of the political system, the economy and the armed forces.
“In the third move a referendum will have to be held and the people asked if they wanted to join NATO or not. Filing an application and acquiring membership would be the fourth move,” Yatsenyuk said.
On November 30, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier told the ZDF television news channel his attitude to the issue was very clear.
“Ukraine’s membership of NATO for me cannot be on the agenda. In any case, I do not see Ukraine on the way to NATO,” he said.
A similar attitude has been expressed by the foreign policy representative of the parliamentary faction of Germany’s Social-Democratic Party, Niels Annen. Interviewed by TASS in early December, Annen said, “Naturally this (decision to cancel Ukraine’s non-aligned status - TASS) was an independent decision by the leadership in Kiev, but Ukraine’s membership of NATO will not materialize in the near future. Kiev knows that. I would expect (Ukraine) in 2015 will refrain from such steps that are redundant and escalate tensions,” he said.