Since regaining its independence in the aftermath of the Soviet Union’s collapse nearly 30 years ago, Ukraine has sought to build links with the West. This includes ties with institutions such as NATO, with which Ukraine has established a distinctive partnership. Kyiv has been keen on deepening those ties. Its interest in becoming a NATO member has continued to grow since 2014, as it views NATO as a means to protect Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity from its aggressive neighbor, Russia.
Although NATO-Ukraine cooperation has intensified, and the Alliance maintains its “open door” policy, NATO members appear reluctant to put Ukraine on a membership track. Despite the fact that Russia continues a low-intensity conflict against Ukraine—and occupies Ukrainian territory—Kyiv can expand its practical cooperation with NATO. However, in the near term, Kyiv will have to keep its expectations about membership modest.
Read the rest at Turkish Policy Quarterly