NATO states have said Ukraine can join the military alliance “when allies agree and conditions are met” after President Volodymyr Zelensky criticised the “absurd” delay to accession.
In a communique, NATO said it recognised the need to move faster but would not be drawn on a timeframe, as it cannot join NATO while it is at war with Russia but wants to join as soon as possible after fighting ends.
Earlier Mr Zelensky who is now in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius, where the summit is happening said there seemed to be “no readiness” to invite Ukraine to NATO or make it a member.
Meanwhile, French officials on Tuesday said France will join Britain in supplying Ukraine with long-range cruise missiles, which can travel 250 km (155 miles), to allow Ukrainian forces to hit Russian troops and supplies deep behind front lines.
French president Emmanuel Macron said he had decided to boost military aid to Ukraine to help its counteroffensive, but noted that Paris had received assurances from Kyiv that the missiles would not be fired into Russia.