An emotive speech to the European parliament on Tuesday, where Zelensky had beseeched the union to “prove that you are with us”, won a long, standi
An emotive speech to the European parliament on Tuesday, where Zelensky had beseeched the union to “prove that you are with us”, won a long, standing ovation and a ringing endorsement from MEPs in a non-binding resolution that called on Ukraine to be given EU candidate status. However, Ukraine’s bid to join the EU has left the Remain-supporting peer confused.
Expressing his displeasure, Lord Adonis tweeted: “It is desperately sad and heart-rending that many leaders of Brexit, including ex-Theresa May cabinet ministers who pushed Brexit on its way, are now saying the EU should consider Ukraine’s application to join asap as an act of solidarity with European values and our security.”
In the latest video address to the nation on Wednesday morning, Volodymyr Zelensky said Russia was seeking to erase Ukraine, its history and people as he reiterated his appeal for the EU to fast-track its membership application: “This is no time to be neutral.”
He said: “We ask the European Union for Ukraine’s immediate accession via a new special procedure.
“Our goal is to be together with all Europeans and, most importantly, to be on an equal footing.
“I’m sure it’s fair. I’m sure it’s possible.
“Prove that you are with us. Prove that you will not let us go,” he implored.
The EU accession process usually takes years and requires meeting strict criteria that takes into account such factors as economic stability, the level of corruption, and respect for human rights.
Unanimity among the 27-nation bloc is required to allow new members in.
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If all the votes are in favour, Ukraine will be officially considered a candidate to join the EU.
After that, the Commission will come up with a framework for negotiations, which also has to be unanimously endorsed by the 27.
Ukraine will likely be asked to begin reforms before discussions take place.
Both Georgia and Ukraine have signed Association Agreements with the EU “on economic integration and political approximation” and free trade, which are not guarantees for eventual membership.
As Russian troops continued their attacks this week throughout Ukraine, officials in Kyiv suggested they were awaiting signals of an EU willingness to accept an accelerated Ukrainian application for membership.
In an interview with Euronews TV published on Sunday, European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen expressed her support for Ukrainian membership but did not address the calls for rapid accession.
She said: “They are one of us and we want them in.”