Spurned a NATO invitation, Ukraine still reaps rewards at summit

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VILNIUS, July 12 (Reuters) – NATO leaders at this week’s summit in Vilnius said Ukraine should be able to join the military alliance at some point in the future but dashed Kyiv’s hopes for an immediate invitation.

The guarded statement on Ukraine’s path into NATO irked President Volodymyr Zelenskiy. But after 16 months of war since Russia launched what it calls its special military operation, his country is still set to come away from the summit with some tangible rewards. Below are some of the main commitments pledged to Ukraine in connection with the summit.


While NATO stopped short of offering an immediate invitation, it did drop a requirement for Ukraine to fulfil what is called a Membership Action Plan (MAP), effectively removing a hurdle on Kyiv’s path into the alliance. The first sitting of a new NATO-Ukraine Council also took place on Wednesday, a new format designed to tighten cooperation between Kyiv and the 31-nation alliance. In a declaration, NATO countries also pledged its support for Ukraine for “as long as it takes”.


G7 countries are set to announce an international framework that would pave the way for long-term security assurances for Ukraine to boost its defences against Russia and deter Moscow from future aggression, officials said.


France will join Britain in supplying Ukraine with long-range cruise missiles, which can travel 250 km (155 miles), a move that allows Ukrainian forces to hit Russian troops and supplies deep behind front lines. The missiles would come from existing French military stocks, a French military source told reporters, adding that it would be a “significant number”.


Britain has said it will provide Ukraine with more than 70 combat and logistic vehicles, thousands of rounds of ammunition for Challenger 2 tanks, and a 50 million pound ($65 million) support package for equipment repair. Britain will also launch a project through NATO to establish a medical rehabilitation centre for Ukrainian soldiers.


A coalition of 11 nations will start training Ukrainian pilots to fly F-16 fighter jets in August in Denmark, and a training centre will be set up in Romania. While not decided yet, the training programme should leave Ukrainian pilots and service personnel able to use F-16s in combat by early next year if supplies of the fighter jets are agreed.


German government finalised a 700-million-euro ($770 million) military aid package for Ukraine, including two Patriot launchers from Bundeswehr stock, 40 additional Marder infantry fighting vehicles, as well as additional battle tanks and ammunition.


Norway will increase its military support to Ukraine by 2.5 billion crowns ($239 million) this year to 10 billion.


The alliance agreed to further develop the Comprehensive Assistance Package (CAP), under which Ukraine receives non-lethal assistance with 500 million euros committed so far, into a multi-year programme.

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