Alexa

Yushchenko: Georgia conflict shows Kiev needs NATO

Yushchenko: Georgia conflict shows Kiev needs NATO

Ukraine's president said Wednesday that the Russian invasion of Georgia shows that NATO membership is the only guarantee of his country's independence.
Viktor Yushchenko told visiting U.S. Senators Joe Lieberman and Lindsey Graham that the conflict in Georgia demonstrates Ukraine's need for NATO protection. The Republican senators were on their way to Georgia to show support for its pro-Western leadership and discuss the crisis.
"Our aim is to receive international guarantees of Ukraine's territorial integrity which is only (guarantee) possible in the framework of collective security," Yushchenko told the senators.
Russian troops have been occupying large parts of Georgia for days. They moved in after Georgian forces tried to take the rebel province of South Ossetia by force earlier this month.
Many Ukrainians worry that after dealing with Georgia, the Kremlin might set its sights on Ukraine. Like Georgia, this former Soviet republic has angered Moscow by seeking closer ties with the West and membership in NATO.