Espreso. Global

Ukraine starts negotiations with EU

22 June, 2024 Saturday

The EU Council has set a date for the start of accession negotiations for Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova. These talks will begin on June 25, after the last obstacles to the negotiation process have been overcome


Hungary withdrew its objections after other EU member states promised Budapest that Viktor Orban's concerns about the problems with the rights of national minorities in Ukraine would be discussed during the negotiations on Ukraine's accession to the EU. And the decision to start negotiations was approved by the Dutch parliament - in this country, such decisions are necessarily submitted to the parliament for consideration.

We can now talk about the start of a real negotiation process that should culminate in Ukraine and Moldova joining the EU, of course, because negotiations with the two countries are starting that are important to us. And I would like to draw attention to the fact that the process of Ukraine's integration into the EU is taking place in record time. From the moment the decision was made to invite Ukraine to join the European Union to the moment the negotiations are scheduled, only a few years have passed, which is related to the time of the Russian-Ukrainian war. And, of course, we can make an exception for this war, but at the same time, we should realize that without reaching certain standards necessary to start negotiations, the EU Council could not have made any decision on the negotiation process anyway. Because in institutions like the European Union, you have to meet the criteria to take the next step.

Of course, the negotiations themselves will be difficult. And no one can say today how long they will last. However, the fact that the talks have been scheduled is a signal not only to us, the citizens of Ukraine, that Ukrainians see Ukraine as a state that will take its place in the European family of nations. It is also a signal to Russian President Vladimir Putin and his chauvinistic compatriots that the civilized world will not accept Russia's plans to destroy Ukrainian statehood or turn Ukraine into a satellite state in Russia's pathetic sphere of influence.

The civilized world will not agree with the interpretation of Russian history. It does not provide for the existence of an independent Ukrainian state, Ukrainian people, Ukrainian language and culture on Ukrainian land. The civilized world considers all of this to be the heritage of European civilization, and this is also a very important assessment not only of Ukrainian efforts to join the European Union, but also of the very role that Ukraine has played for a thousand years, since the time of Kievan Rus, in European history, in European civilization, in finding ways to build the world in which all Europeans want to live.

That is why it is absolutely logical for Ukraine to join the EU. Therefore, it is absolutely logical that the state borders of Russia and Ukraine will be the border of civilization, which will probably never meet in the twenty-first century in a common understanding of values, respect for human life, respect for culture and values that determine development, and not the cult of death and hatred that has become the program of existence of the modern Russian state, Russian society, and Russian people.

So now that these negotiations are becoming instrumental, we can say clearly: when the Ukrainian people said goodbye to the evil empire on August 24, 1991, it was the final farewell, the final divorce, a sincere desire not to be where death and futility reign.

Obviously, it will not be easy for the European Union to conduct these negotiations either, and we realize this. Not just because in the case of Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova, there are no clear guarantees that by the time the negotiation process is over, these two states, and another state that is a candidate for EU membership, Georgia, will be able to fully regain control of their territories, to be states in which legitimate authorities control virtually all internationally recognized territory. For Ukraine, this means the Russian occupation of Crimea, Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia regions, even if partially, for Moldova it is Transnistria, and for Georgia it is Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

Therefore, if Europe wants to really develop to the east, to the Caucasus, if Europe wants to put a fortress between itself and the world of evil, which is embodied in the modern Russian statehood-the statehood of bombing, torture, rape, and lies, Europeans, and the entire West, will have to make rather unconventional decisions. Decisions related not only to the program of further weakening of Russia, but also to the program of changing its attitude to the very criteria for EU accession.

In principle, there has already been such an exception - Cyprus is part of the European Union, but its authorities do not control the entire internationally recognized territory of the republic. And now, perhaps, such exceptions will have to be made for other EU member states. By the way, it is not necessarily for Ukraine, but Moldova and Georgia will have to make such non-standard decisions. But the very beginning of negotiations with Ukraine and Moldova at a time when the Russian invaders continue their cruel and unjust war against our country, when they continue to occupy Crimea, Donbas, Zaporizhzhia, Kherson region, and hold Ukrainian citizens - from Sevastopol to Melitopol - hostage in one of the most disgusting countries in the world, when they control Transnistria, the very beginning of the negotiations indicates that the world is beginning to realize the need for such non-standard solutions and the need for further resistance to the Russian state and its shameful supporters around the world.

So, I congratulate you on the start of these talks, and I am sure that sooner or later we will meet in a Europe that will be reliably protected from Moscow's evil.


About the author. Vitaly Portnikov, journalist, winner of the Shevchenko National Prize of Ukraine.

The editors do not always share the opinions expressed by the blog authors.

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