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UWC applauds EU leaders for opening accession talks with Ukraine – calls for accelerated membership

#UWC news
December 18,2023 507
UWC applauds EU leaders for opening accession talks with Ukraine – calls for accelerated membership

The Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) welcomes the European Council’s decision at their recent summit in Brussels to open European Union (EU) accession negotiations with Ukraine and Moldova and grant EU candidate status to Georgia.   

“We thank the EU leaders for their principled position and consistent support of Ukraine’s EU aspirations. The beginning of accession talks is a significant achievement that brings Ukraine closer to the EU and acknowledges Ukraine’s progress in implementing European standards and institutions. This is also a powerful rebuke to Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin, whose attempts to influence European politics through funding pro-Russian politicians, energy blackmail, disinformation, cyber warfare and military aggression have failed to impede Ukraine’s European integration,” stated UWC President Paul Grod.   

“Although we welcome the EU’s decision to open accession talks, 10 years has been far too long to wait, and the cost has been much too great for the Ukrainians. Ten years of EU and NATO dithering has emboldened Russia to inflict a war on Ukraine that has cost hundreds of thousands of deaths, hundreds of billions of Euros in destruction, a global refugee crisis, and destabilized global peace and security. The sooner Ukraine becomes and EU member and defeats Russia, the sooner Europe will return to peace and stability.”   

The decision of the European Council also demonstrates the coherence, power and resolve of a united Europe, with Ukraine as its integral part. Having a battle-hardened army and people committed to European values, Ukraine will expand the European bloc’s capabilities and strengthen its resilience against external threats. Together, the EU and Ukraine will be stronger.    

“The UWC and our member organizations in 70 countries have been advocating for Ukraine’s EU and NATO members for decades, both within Ukraine and with the EU and NATO member states.  Our primary goal is to advocate for the interests of the global Ukrainian people. A key priority is immediate membership for Ukraine in the EU and NATO, while ensuring political, military and economic support essential for Kyiv to succeed in its battle against Russian neo-imperialism.  With the appropriate support from the EU, NATO and other allies, Ukraine will defeat Russia. Only a Russian defeat and a Ukrainian victory bring an end to Putin’s expansionist ambitions that not only jeopardize European security but also pose challenges to wider transatlantic unity,” concluded President Grod.  

Background on Ukraine’s road towards EU membership 

For the past 10 years, the Ukrainian people have been standing up to Russia’s tyranny and paying for their choice to be a member of the EU with their lives. For decades, Russia has used political manipulations, disinformation, targeted assassinations, and even full-scale military invasion to force Ukrainians into Russia’s empire. In late 2013, millions took to the streets across Ukraine in what is today referred to as the Euromaidan or Revolution of Dignity. They demanded that their treasonous president Viktor Yanukovych sign the EU-Ukraine association agreement. Instead, he betrayed the people of Ukraine and chose an alliance with Moscow. Under pressure from the millions of peaceful protestors demanding his resignation, Yanukovych fled to Russia.  

In the years leading up these protests, Ukraine’s President at the behest of his Russian handlers, eviscerated Ukraine’s armed forces and allowed for Russia’s infiltration of all of Ukraine’s security services. This allowed Vladimir Putin to invade Ukraine in February 2014 and illegally occupy Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula and parts of its eastern region. For 8 years, Ukraine resisted and fought an anti-terrorist operation in eastern Ukraine, until Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022. 

Cover: Frederick Florin/AFP/Getty Images

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