The European Commission is expected to vote in favor of granting EU candidate status to both Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova on Friday, according to the German news agency DPA, quoted by Agerpres.
A recommendation to this effect for the governments of the 27 EU Member States is due to be approved on Friday at a meeting chaired by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, DPA journalists learned from sources in European Commission circles.
However, both Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova they will face a long and difficult accession process, even if they are granted candidate status. In the case of Ukraine, the main focus will be on promoting good governance, the rule of law and anti-corruption measures.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has nominated Ukraine for EU membership shortly after the Russian invasion began in February.
Shortly afterwards, the Republic of Moldova and Georgia also submitted their own applications. EU countries then instructed the European Commission to look into the matter and make a recommendation on how to proceed.
According to sources in European Commission circles, Georgia may be granted candidate country status only after certain conditions are met. As in the case of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo, Georgia is expected to receive “potential EU candidate” status for the time being.
Once the European Commission’s recommendations are made public, the governments of the 27 EU member states will have to decide how to proceed, a decision on Ukraine’s candidate status is expected next week, when EU leaders will meet in Brussels on Thursday for a summit.
On Thursday night, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said the visit of leaders of France, Germany, Italy and Romania to Kyiv marked a “historic day” for his country.
“Ukraine enjoys the support of four strong European states,” Volodymyr Zelensky said in a video, adding that Ukraine is now closer to the European Union than ever since its independence.
Europe could write a new story about freedom and “finally eliminate the gray area between the EU and Russia,” thanks to the courage of Ukrainian men and women, Zelenski said.
French President Macron, German Chancellor Scholz, Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi and Romanian President Klaus Iohannis promised at a joint press conference in Kyiv that they would support Ukraine’s bid to become an official candidate for EU membership.
The European Parliament demands the granting of candidate status to Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova
Leaders of political groups in the European Parliament called in a joint statement on June 9 for EU heads of state and government to grant candidate status to Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova and to take steps to adopt a similar decision in the case of Georgia.
“The European Union must show courage, determination and vision in the context of the brutal war of aggression against our European neighbor Ukraine and the deterioration of the international environment. The EU must be a reliable partner and a credible geopolitical player that lives up to its principles and values by showing solidarity with those who fight for the same ideals, “the statement said.
“Ukrainian citizens want to live in a free, democratic and prosperous country, which is a committed member of the European family. We recognize that these aspirations are shared by the peoples of Georgia and the Republic of Moldova and the countries of the Western Balkans whose expectations should not continue to be neglected, “noted the leaders of political groups in the European Parliament earlier this month.
“Ukrainian citizens want to live in a free, democratic and prosperous country that is a proud and dedicated member of the European Union. We recognize that these aspirations are also found among people in Georgia and Moldova as well as in the countries of the Western Balkans, whose expectations should not be neglected. That is why we strongly call for the granting of candidate status to the European Union, Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova, thus respecting Article 49 of the Treaty on European Union, being the start of a merit-based initiative, and for granting the same status to Georgia, thus fulfilling the legitimate aspirations of the Georgian people. At the same time, we remind you that the European Union’s commitment to the Western Balkans is being maintained “, the statement of the European Parliament’s political leaders also stated.
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Editor: Marco Badea
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