Kyiv [Ukraine], June 10 (ANI): North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Deputy Secretary-General Mircea Joane has confirmed that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has been invited to the alliance's summit in Madrid.
The summit is set to take place in Madrid, Spain on June 28 and June 29 respectively, The Kyiv Independent reported.
The summit would be attended for the first time by NATO partners from the Pacific - Australia, New Zealand, Japan and South Korea, Joane said in an official statement.
"Of course, NATO enlargement, and open-door policy will be an important topic of discussion. We hope that Finland and Sweden will join our ranks. And, of course, we must decide on Ukraine. President Volodymyr Zelensky will be present at our summit in one way or another. in Madrid, " Mircea Joane added.
The announcement of Zelensky joining the summit was made during a discussion organized by Politico, local media reported.
Earlier in the day, Europa Press, citing sources in the Spanish government, said Spain planned to send Zelensky a formal invitation to the summit in Madrid on June 29 and 30. However, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba admitted that he does not expect positive decisions for Ukraine at the NATO summit.
Moreover, the NATO Defense Ministers will meet on June 15-16 in Brussels, the alliance said on Friday, adding that the EU, Georgia, Finland, Sweden and Ukraine are invited to attend the event.
The meeting will start with a working dinner where Finland, Georgia, Sweden, Ukraine and the European Union are invited and will be chaired by NATO Secretary-General, Jens Stoltenberg.
On February 24, Russia began a military operation in Ukraine, responding to calls for help from the breakaway republics of Donetsk and Luhansk in countering the aggression of Ukrainian troops.
Nearly 14 million Ukrainians have been forced to flee their homes due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict, according to United Nations (UN) estimates and most of those displaced are women and children.
The conflict has left 15.7 million Ukrainians in need of humanitarian support, with some of them lacking access to water and electricity. (ANI)