"Ukraine is now focused on reform, Ukraine is now focused on modernizing its defense and security sector, [and] we are helping them with that. And then we will assess an application from Ukraine on joining NATO in exactly the same way as we would assess any other application, but that's something we have to address when and if an application from Ukraine is something they would like to provide us with," he said.

Speaking about the reasons for confidence in the Ukrainian leadership's intentions to carry out reforms, Stoltenberg said that NATO was very often the answer to many problems, but NATO was not always the only answer to all problems.

"We cannot solve all the problems in Ukraine, but NATO provides both strong political support and strong practical support for Ukraine. After all, the Ukrainians themselves will solve their own problems," Stoltenberg said.