Some EU countries are threatening: will Ukraine become an EU candidate today?

Some EU countries are threatening
Will Ukraine become a candidate for EU membership today?

The EU Commission recommends granting Ukraine EU accession candidate status. Their President Selenskyj promotes it almost every day. But all 27 member states have to agree. Things are getting serious today – not just for war-torn Ukraine.

At a summit meeting in Brussels today, the European Union will decide whether Ukraine, which has been attacked by Russia, will be given the status of an EU accession candidate. Before the deliberations of Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz and his colleagues, broad support for the corresponding recommendation of the EU Commission was evident. However, a decision must be taken unanimously by all 27 states.

Shortly before the start of the two-day meeting, EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen warned to support Ukraine’s candidate status. “It is now up to the European Council to decide and live up to the historic responsibility we face,” she said. The process of admitting countries like Ukraine is based on merit. “But how we respond to their passion and their progress is up to us.”

In addition to Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova are also waiting for the prospect of EU membership. According to the EU Commission’s recommendation for the summit, Moldova should also be given candidate status. Georgia should first meet reform requirements. All three countries applied for EU membership shortly after Russia’s war against Ukraine began. Since then, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has been pushing almost every day to officially make his country a candidate for the EU. Ukraine proves every day that it is already part of a unified European space of values, he argues.

Accession is still in the distant future

However, even the status as an EU candidate would not mean that Ukraine and Moldova will be admitted to the EU in the near future. The European policy spokesman for the CDU/CSU parliamentary group, Gunther Krichbaum, therefore called for an “intermediate model” at ntv, for example in the form of a so-called associated membership. “That means: the country would not yet have the right to vote, the country would not have other options yet, but it would probably be part of it.”

It is expected that the heads of state and government of the EU states will also discuss how Ukraine can continue to be supported in the war against Russia. Among other things, there is talk of making a further 500 million euros available for arms deliveries. In addition, it should be about the reconstruction of the country. Estonia’s Prime Minister Kaja Kallas made it clear on Wednesday that she believes that the larger EU countries are currently the main players when it comes to military aid. “Estonia has done a lot and can’t really do much more. But I believe there are still ways to help them, and that’s from the larger member states,” said the prime minister of the Baltic EU and NATO country, aged 1, 2 million inhabitants.

In the morning, a joint summit of the EU and the states of the western Balkans will deal with the EU prospects of Serbia, Albania, North Macedonia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo and Montenegro. EU countries such as Austria recently threatened to tie their approval of EU accession candidate status for Ukraine and Moldova to progress in efforts to expand the EU in the Western Balkans. Specifically, there was a demand, among other things, for Bosnia-Herzegovina to be granted the status of an EU accession candidate.

The rapprochement of the Western Balkan countries to the EU has been progressing slowly for years, also due to differences of opinion and blockades by EU countries. For example, the EU country Bulgaria is currently preventing the start of accession talks with North Macedonia.

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