Ukraine's foreign minister revealed plans on Monday to develop and adopt in April an annual national program for NATO integration, UNIAN said.

"We have set ourselves the goal to draft, approve and start implementing this program in April," Volodymyr Ohryzko was quoted as saying.

He said the program should be 100% completed by the end of 2009.

The minister said an expert group from NATO's secretariat would arrive in the country in February to bring the positions of the military alliance and Ukraine closer.

Ukraine's bid to join NATO was derailed by West European powers led by Germany and France in early December during a meeting of foreign ministers from the alliance's member states. Ukraine had received strong U.S. backing for its bid.

Surveys have consistently shown more than half of Ukrainians oppose NATO membership.


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