Ukraine’s Hopes of NATO Entry Dashed Over Its Persistent Corruption

Ukraine has been jockeying for a spot in NATO since it gained independence from the former Soviet Union in 1991 and has good reason to believe it has a shot. After all, NATO allies agreed at the 2008 Bucharest Summit that the country would one day become a member of the military alliance.

Despite early eagerness, Ukraine pursued a non-alignment policy from 2010 to 2014; however, it jettisoned this approach around the time of Russia’s annexation of the Crimean Peninsula. In 2017, the Ukrainian parliament — which has not had elections since 2019 — adopted legislation recommitting the pursuit of membership in NATO.

A senior official in the U.S. State Department recently told the Telegraph that NATO will soon inform Ukraine ahead of the alliance’s annual summit next week that it remains too corrupt to enter the alliance.

“We have to step back and applaud everything that Ukraine has done in the name of reforms over the last two-plus years,” the official told the British paper. “As they continue to make those reforms, we want to commend them, we want to talk about additional steps that need to be taken, particularly in the area of anti-corruption. It is a priority for many of us around the table.”

This is hardly the first time the alliance has thrown cold water on Ukraine’s dreams of membership over its struggles with corruption. (Read more from “Ukraine’s Hopes of NATO Entry Dashed Over Its Persistent Corruption” HERE)