German Chancellor Olaf Schulz said on Thursday he was not in favor of giving Ukraine a “shortcut” to EU membership which he said would not be “a matter of a few months or a few years”.
He stressed during a speech to European Union deputies that “the fact that there is no shortcut on the path to EU membership (Ukraine) is an imperative of justice for the six Western Balkan countries” that have long wanted to join the European bloc. The Bundestag.
“Emmanuel Macron is right to point out that the accession process is not a matter of a few months or a few years,” the French president added.
“That is why we currently want to focus on rapid and practical support to Ukraine” in light of the Russian offensive since February 24, he repeated ahead of Monday’s EU-Western Balkan summit in Brussels.
Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova recently applied for candidate status while six western Balkan countries – Serbia, Kosovo, Albania, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Bosnia – aspire to join the European Union, but the enlargement process has been stalled for years.
The Prime Minister considered that these six countries “have been carrying out intensive reforms for years.” “Fulfilling our obligations to them is not just a matter of credibility,” he said.
The German leader insisted that enlargement was “in our strategic interest” in the face of the aspirations of Russia, which already exerts significant influence over certain countries in the region.
“It is also about our security that cannot exist without a stable Western Europe from the Balkans,” he says.
Last month, the chancellor said he wanted to revive the entry process for these six candidates by helping to file that file “with all the strength at his disposal.”
In Brussels, European Council President Charles Michel on Wednesday advocated the creation of a “European geopolitical community” to prepare candidate countries for integration.
Thus, the Belgian adopted under a new name the proposal of the “European Political Community”, which was defended by French President Emmanuel Macron in early May before the European Parliament in Strasbourg.
The French leader proposed the creation of this new group of “political, security and cooperation cooperation”.
The chancellor, who did not mention this proposal to the deputies, considered it “very exciting” during a meeting with Emmanuel Macron.
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