“Making false promises” to Ukrainians regarding EU accession “would be neither good for the EU nor for Ukraine,” added Juncker, who was boss at the Berlaymont in Brussels from 2014 to 2019.
“You shouldn’t make false promises to the people in Ukraine who are up to their necks in suffering,” Juncker said. “I am very angry about some voices in Europe who are telling Ukrainians that they can become members immediately.” Kyiv has been fending off Russian President Vladimir Putin’s full-scale invasion which began in February 2022.
EU membership for aspirant countries like Ukraine and Moldova must be connected to “internal reforms” and be backed by a “qualified majority,” Juncker argued. Ukraine has faced questions for years over its track record on fighting corruption.
Current European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen and European Council boss Charles Michel are both much more bullish than Juncker on Ukraine’s accession to the bloc.
On Tuesday, POLITICO reported that the EU is gearing up to open negotiations with Ukraine on its future accession with a formal announcement expected as soon as December, according to three diplomats.
During German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock’s visit to Kyiv on Tuesday — part of the first-ever informal meeting of EU foreign ministers outside of the bloc — she underlined that “the future of Ukraine lies in the European Union. In our community of freedom, which will stretch from Lisbon to Luhansk.” In September, Baerbock also noted on a trip to Kyiv that Ukraine needed to do more to root out corruption.
Featured image source: https://www.slobodenpecat.mk/en/zhan-klod-junker-ukraina-ne-e-podgotvena-za-eu-poradi-korupcijata-brisel-i-dava-lazhna-nadezh/
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