US Renews Push to Bring Georgia, Ukraine Toward NATO

Summit to focus on membership, Russia
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 2, 2008 9:13 AM CST
Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili speaks at a press conference in Tbilisi on Friday, Nov. 28, 2008.    (AP Photo/Shakh Aivazov)
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(Newser) – The US will urge NATO today to put Georgia and Ukraine on the road to membership, Reuters reports. France and Germany, worried about Russia’s response, blocked a similar move at an April summit. Though members agreed in principle that the two former Soviet republics could someday be members, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is expected to push for further compromise.

NATO foreign ministers will also address ties to Russia at the two-day summit in Brussels. Rice said she agrees with reviving contacts frozen after its invasion of Georgia, but cautioned allies about moving too fast on military matters while Russian troops remain on Georgian soil. A US official said the principle of NATO-Russian cooperation had been “called into question by Russia’s own actions.”