A meeting of defense ministers and other senior officials from the U.S., Britain, North European, and Baltic countries, held on September 23 and 24 in Copenhagen, made clear to the Baltic states that their possible admission to NATO is being postponed. The main reason for the deferral is that the Baltic states are currently not capable of fulfilling mutual assistance obligations if NATO member countries are attacked. The NATO ministers promised to support the Baltic states’ efforts to meet that qualification in the future. In Washington, Estonian ambassador Toomas Ilves commented that the Baltic states "are concerned about what will happen to us should NATO’s enlargement fail to include us, given Russia’s threats to invade us if NATO expands." (BNS, September 24 and 25)
Russia Signs Test Ban Treaty.