Ukraine's NATO membership not on agenda - Polish ambassador to Russia

While Warsaw sees no reason to talk about Ukraine joining NATO in the near term, it has reaffirmed its intention to foster the relations between Kyiv and the West in general along the lines of its own cooperation model.

While Warsaw sees no reason to talk about Ukraine joining NATO in the near term, it has reaffirmed its intention to foster the relations between Kyiv and the West in general along the lines of its own cooperation model.

"First of all, the question of Ukraine's NATO membership is not on the agenda. Secondly, this must be decided first and foremost by the Ukrainian people. As far as I know, attitudes there towards this matter are controversial. The question whether or not to cooperate with NATO, whether or not join the alliance has long been discussed but we are at about the same stage we were ten or 15 years ago," Polish Ambassador to Russia Wojciech Zajaczkowski said in an interview with Interfax.

At the same time, the diplomat stressed: "As Ukraine's neighbor and a country interested in stability, economic and social development, Poland will support the aspirations of the Ukrainian authorities to establish cooperation with western countries."

"Our experience of the past 25 years shows that the reforms conducted in parallel with developing cooperation with the West lead to positive results. If we compare the GDPs (Gross Domestic Product) of Poland and Ukraine in the late 1980s, they were at approximately the same level. Today we radically differ from one another. Our GDP has more than doubled. The Ukrainian one remained at the same level as in the late 1980 - early 1990s. This is proved not only by our experience, this is proved by the experience of all countries in Central Europe…We believe that if other countries follow this path, they will be able to achieve similar results," Zajaczkowski said.

"In Russia the question is posed under this angle: Poland and Ukraine, the West and Ukraine will be friends against whom? And we say: we will be friends but for the sake of something. The goal must be not negative, but positive and creative. It is not interesting for us to be friends with someone against Russia," he said.

Read more: Putin meets with Poroshenko, both urge peace in east Ukraine - spokesman

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