Belgian Prime Minister discusses Ukraine’s EU membership with Volodymyr Zelensky
Ukraine’s application for membership of the European Union, which will be a central subject of the European Council summit which begins this Thursday (June 23), enjoys the full support of Belgium, Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo in a telephone interview with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Wednesday (June 22).
“Tomorrow, the Member States of the European Union will give a strong symbolic signal: Ukraine is part of the European family”De Croo said in a statement, adding that the Ukrainians are now fighting “for our European values of freedom and democracy” and that granting Kyiv candidate status would only be “the beginning of the journey for Ukraine”because “considerable efforts will be needed, in particular to fight corruption and establish an effective rule of law”.
Mr. De Croo’s statement echoes the opinion of the European Commission presented last Friday (17 June), which recommends granting Ukraine candidate status provided that it carries out reforms in four areas in particular : the rule of law, the fight against corruption, the internal market and the protection of minorities.
Ukraine now needs the unanimous approval of all 27 EU member states to go further in the accession process, which is why it has been trying to win over reluctant member states to its cause over the past few years. weeks.
If Ukraine obtains candidate status, it will be the start of long negotiations before effective integration into the bloc.
Mr De Croo and Mr Zelensky also spoke about the reconstruction of Ukraine, the Belgian Prime Minister being convinced that “it is precisely the reconstruction of Ukraine that will be a source of opportunities to take important steps”.
On his side, Mr. Zelenskyy thanked Belgium for its support for its application for EU membership as well as for its assistance during the war. He added that Ukraine expects Belgium to bring “a significant contribution” to the reconstruction of the country. He also invited Mr. De Croo to visit Ukraine.
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