(Kyiv) Polish President Andrzej Duda on Sunday gave unconditional support to Ukraine’s candidacy for the European Union in the face of skepticism from France and Germany, judging that “business as usual” was impossible now in Moscow after massacres of civilians associated with Russian troops.
Posted at 10:30 am
The first head of state to address the Ukrainian parliament since Russia’s invasion on February 24, the Polish president, whose speech was interrupted by several standing ovations, vowed that he would not relax his efforts “until Ukraine is not a member of the European Union ”.
“We must respect” those who “shed their blood” to be included in Europe, “even if the situation is complicated, even if there are doubts. I have no doubt that the European Union will take such an action” towards Ukraine, he stressed at a press conference with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
These declarations are in contrast to those, at the same time, by the French Minister Delegate for European Affairs Clément Beaune, where Ukraine’s entry into the EU would take “perhaps 15 or 20 years”.
Ukrainian diplomacy chief Dmytro Kouleba on Thursday denounced a “second-class treatment” from “certain capitals” about Ukrainian candidacy to join the EU.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz had earlier said he was not in favor of giving Ukraine a “shortcut” to EU membership.
There is no concession to Putin
“The adoption of a decision on the status of Ukraine’s EU candidate to the Council of Europe on June 24 is of paramount importance, mainly psychological and political,” Mr. Doubt, that the country is Ukraine’s main support to the EU and hosts the largest number of Ukrainian refugees.
In front of Ukrainian deputies, he regretted that “recently voices were raised in Europe to ask that Ukraine accept certain requests [du président russe Vladimir] Putin “.
“After Boutcha, Borodianka, Mariupol, there is no more‘ business as usual ’in Russia,” he said.
Hundreds of bodies of civilians were discovered in Boutcha and Borodianka, towns near Kyiv that were occupied and then abandoned by the Russian army.
The city of Mariupol, in southeastern Ukraine, was left in ruins after a three-month siege and relentless shooting that killed at least 20,000 civilians, according to Ukrainian authorities.
“A honest world can not return to the agenda forgetting the crimes, the aggression, the trampled fundamental rights”, added the Polish president.
“Whether for their own peace, economic interests or political ambitions”, Western countries are “sacrificing Ukraine, even a centimeter of its territory or a piece of its sovereignty, it will be a huge blow to the Ukrainian people, but also the entire Western community, ”warned Mr. Duda.
“Only Ukraine has the right to decide its future […] There may be no negotiations or decisions behind Ukraine. Nothing about you if you don’t. Absolutely! This is an inflexible rule. We have to follow it, “he hammered.
“I am grateful for your defense of Europe against the invasion of barbarians and of the new Russian imperialism”, he said, considering that “Russia has not achieved any of its strategic objectives” in Ukraine.
The Ukrainian president for his part praised in front of representatives of “a historic moment”, “a historic union between Ukrainian and Polish citizens”.
“Poland plays an important role in our future, in our common future within the European Union,” he said. If Ukraine becomes a member of the EU, “it will be thanks to Poland”.