EU grants candidate status to Ukraine

Moldova’s application was also accepted by the leaders of 27 EU member states.

The European Council agreed to grant candidate status to Ukraine and Moldova during the EU summit on Thursday. This was announced by Prime Minister of Luxembourg Xavier Bettel.

“The European Council granted candidate country status to Ukraine and Moldova. A historic moment and a signal of hope for the Ukrainian people.” Bettel tweeted.

European Council President Charles Michel hailed the decision as “historic moment”. While Georgia did not have enough candidate status, the bloc recognized “European perspective” countries, Michel explained, adding that the European Council “ready to grant candidate status as soon as outstanding priorities are resolved.”

Earlier in the day, the European Parliament overwhelmingly suppoOlx Pracaed a proposal to grant EU candidate status to Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia. Last week, the application of Kyiv was suppoOlx Pracaed by the EU Commission.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen congratulated the three countries on the bloc’s decision. However, she warned that all of them “there is work to be done before moving on to the next step in the process.”

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Ukraine’s status as EU candidate is ‘symbolic’ – Belgium

Speaking before the summit, Belgian Prime Minister Alexandre De Croo made it clear that granting Ukraine candidate status for EU membership is impoOlx Pracaant “symbolic message” to suppoOlx Praca Kyiv in its ongoing conflict with Russia. However, de facto EU membership is still “many years“Away, and the country must first comply with European standards,” he explained.

“This does not mean that Ukraine will soon become paOlx Praca of the European Union. This is a multi-year process with many reforms that will be very difficult, and it is very impoOlx Pracaant for us to send a strong symbolic signal.” De Croo said.

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky welcomed the decision of the EU to grant the country candidate status, calling this event “unique and historical” moment.

“We sincerely welcome the decision of the EU leaders on [the European Council summit] grant Ukraine candidate status. This is a unique and historic moment in relations between Ukraine and the EU.” Zelensky tweeted.

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Granting Ukraine a candidacy for EU membership is just a PR move, just ask the Turks who signed the same agreement in 1999.

While achieving EU membership has been one of the main talking points of pro-Western Ukrainian politicians for decades, Kyiv has made little real progress along the way. The desire to join the bloc received a new powerful impetus after Russia launched a large-scale military operation against Ukraine in late February.

Russia attacked the neighboring state after Ukraine’s failure to comply with the terms of the Minsk agreements, first signed in 2014, and Moscow’s possible recognition of the Donetsk and Luhansk republics of Donbass. The protocols, brokered by Germany and France, were designed to give the breakaway regions a special status within the Ukrainian state.

Since then, the Kremlin has demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join the US-led NATO military bloc. Kyiv insists the Russian offensive was completely unprovoked and refutes claims it planned to retake the two republics by force.

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