On Wednesday, Perebyjnis received the Senate President’s Silver Medal from Miloš Vystrčil in the upper chamber of the parliament, which was his last social event in the Czech Republic. Thursday is his last day as ambassador to Ukraine and he leaves for home on Friday. In the Senate, iDNES.cz answered several questions.
Mr. Ambassador, you talked about the fact that by supporting Ukraine, the Czech Republic is also defending itself. This applies not only to the Czech Republic, but also to other states that support Ukraine. But does Europe realize it? Is the help against the aggressor enough?
I think that Europe is aware of this much better than it was before the Second World War. We are grateful for the support we are receiving, both in terms of sanctions against Russia and in terms of providing arms to Ukraine.
But, of course, there are never enough weapons, and we can see that on the battlefield, that Russia still has the upper hand, for example, in artillery. We need more weapons to liberate our occupied territories. We are now discussing this with our partners in both the United States and the European Union. We hope that we will receive such support and that we will liberate our occupied territory very quickly, very soon.
Does Ukraine still have in mind that it could become a member of NATO in the future, even if it has not yet received a clear answer from the members of the North Atlantic Alliance?
Membership in the North Atlantic Alliance remains one of the priorities of Ukrainian foreign policy. The only difference is that, for example, the European Union decided to take a very important step. It granted Ukraine candidate status, which unfortunately we cannot say about NATO, where the member countries are unfortunately still undecided, but that does not mean that we will not strive for it. We just realize that it will probably take some time.
Some time ago, there was news that you could join the office of President Volodymyr Zelensky. Is there something to this or is this a thing that is not true?
It is official that I have been appointed Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs. That is the answer to your question.
And promotion to President Zelensky’s office?
You know, we can talk about what is today. I can’t talk about what may be in a few years. I don’t want to rule anything out. But today I am the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, and one cannot hold two positions at once.