Baerbock says EU needs Ukraine as a member
The accession of Ukraine and other candidate countries to the EU is in the interests of the European Union itself. In December, the European Council is expected to give a clear signal on Ukraine's membership.
This was stated by German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock on November 2, when she opened the ministerial conference "Bigger, Stronger EU" in Berlin. "We, as the European Union, have clearly stated that we need Ukraine as an EU member," Ukrinform quoted her as saying.
She also recalled the saying that "the heart of Europe lies in Kyiv" and admitted that five years ago, Ukraine's membership in the EU seemed unrealistic or very distant.
The German Foreign Minister also praised Ukraine for continuing reforms during the war and reminded that Ukrainians have been fighting Russian aggression for 616 days. At the same time, Baerbock emphasized that fatigue and frustration should not be allowed to weaken solidarity and unity.
"EU enlargement is a political necessity... Enlargement will make us stronger," the diplomat said.
She is convinced that the new members will bring new dynamism to the EU.
At the same time, Baerbock emphasized the importance of encouraging the candidate countries with actions, as well as supporting them on their way to European integration: financially and structurally. We cannot allow entire generations to live in anticipation, she added.
She also warned that Russian President Vladimir Putin will continue to seek to tear countries that want a European future away from Europe and destabilize them with fake news and propaganda. But the EU cannot allow new gray areas, the minister emphasized.
As you know, the meeting in Berlin is being held on Baerbock's initiative. Foreign ministers of the EU and candidate countries, including Ukraine and Georgia as a potential candidate, have been invited to attend.
Before the conference, Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba told reporters that he would talk to his colleagues from EU member states about the balance between reforms in the EU and the enlargement process, defense industry cooperation and proactive policy.
As reported by OBOZ.UA, earlier the Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Olha Stefanishyna said that the head of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen would soon visit Kyiv. The visit will take place on the eve of the announcement of the results of the EU accession negotiations.