By “certain” EU countries
kyiv complains of ‘second-rate treatment’
05/19/2022, 12:27 PM
In the Bundestag, Chancellor Scholz tempers Ukrainian hopes of rapid EU membership. Shortly after, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kuleba called for an end to “strategic ambiguity surrounding Ukraine’s European perspective”.
The Ukrainian government has called for a clear prospect of EU membership and criticized the “strategic ambiguity” of some EU countries in the process. Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba wrote on Twitter that there was “second class treatment” by “some” EU countries.
“The strategic ambiguity over Ukraine’s European perspective practiced by some EU capitals in recent years has failed and must be lifted,” Kuleba said. This attitude only strengthened Russian President Vladimir Putin and “offended the feelings of Ukrainians”.
Kuleba was probably thinking primarily of Germany and France: Shortly before Ukraine’s foreign minister tweeted, Chancellor Olaf Scholz had toned down expectations in a government statement to the Bundestag that Ukraine might go through a faster EU accession process. Scholz referred to earlier statements by French President Emmanuel Macron. He was right when he said that Ukraine’s EU accession process was “not a matter of a few months or a few years”. To be fair to other long-term candidates in the Western Balkans, there should be “no shortcuts” to the EU.
Ukraine applied to join the EU shortly after the Russian invasion of its country. The European Commission intends to issue its official statement on this in June. However, Macron said last week that the process of joining the EU could take “decades”. Instead, he proposed the creation of a “European political community” for Ukraine and the other candidate countries.
Kyiv clarifies conditions for peace talks
Ukrainian leaders have also made clear their position on a possible resumption of peace talks. Ukrainian negotiator Mykhailo Podoliak wrote on Twitter: “Until Russia is ready to completely unblock our country, our negotiating platform consists of weapons, sanctions and money.”
Russian troops occupied large parts of eastern and southern Ukraine. Also, in 2014, Russia incorporated Ukraine’s Black Sea peninsula of Crimea. In negotiations that began shortly after the start of the war and are currently suspended, Moscow had demanded that kyiv recognize Crimea as Russian territory and the eastern Ukrainian regions of Lugansk and Donetsk as independent states.