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Thursday 23 March 2023 Dublin: 7°C
Alamy Stock Photo
# EU Accession
Zelenskyy says Ukraine deserves for EU entry talks to start 'this year'
Kyiv is set to host a high-profile EU-Ukraine summit tomorrow.

UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT VOLODYMYR Zelenskyy said his war-torn country deserves to start EU accession talks “this year”.

“I believe that Ukraine deserves to start negotiations on EU membership this year,” Zelenskyy said today after talks with EU chief Ursula von der Leyen.

He said further integration with the European bloc would inspire Ukrainians and give them “motivation” to fight against Russian troops.

Kyiv is set to host a high-profile EU-Ukraine summit tomorrow.

In June last year, EU leaders granted candidate status to Ukraine just months after Russian President Vladimir Putin sent troops into the country. But the path to full membership remains long and could take years.

French President Emmanuel Macron warned last May it could be “decades” before Ukraine meets the criteria and achieves full membership.

Zelenskyy said that Ukrainian and EU officials had a “mutual” understanding.

“Only together a strong Ukraine and a strong European Union can protect the life we value,” Zelenskyy said.

“And that our further integration must give energy and motivation to our people to fight against any obstacles and threats.”

The Ukrainian leader also said that global pressure on Russia must be increased.

“The enemy is at a specific stage when Russia’s strategic defeat is already clear,” he said. “But tactically, they still have the resources to attempt offensive actions.”

© AFP 2023

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