MEPs Reaffirm Support for Ukraine’s Path to EU Membership
Leading MEPs have reiterated their support, and the European Parliament’s intention, to continue to do the utmost to assist Ukraine in its EU integration process.
The assurance of support for Ukraine’s path to join the European Union took place at the first Inter-Committee meeting of the European Parliament and the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. The purpose of the meeting was to bring together the chairpersons of the committees of the European Parliament and the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine to discuss the path ahead for Ukraine with regard to the country’s EU accession process, as well as to show solidarity with Kyiv, which is still battling the Russian invasion.
At the meeting, where committee chairs of the European Parliament and the Verkhovna Rada debated the nature and challenges of the EU accession process, MEPs stated their firm condemnation of the illegal and unjustified Russian war of aggression. The EU as well as the European Parliament, they said, are strong allies of Ukraine and will continue to stand with the country and its people in their fight for freedom.
Opening the meeting European Parliament President Roberta Metsola said, ‘Today’s meeting marks the launch of an in-depth, comprehensive and concrete sectorial cooperation between our two institutions. Cooperation that is crucial in view of Ukraine’s European path. This is something that Speaker Ruslan Stefanchuk and I have discussed and converged over on several occasions… because there is no question that Ukraine’s future is as a Member of the European Union. Rest assured that Ukraine will always find a friend and ally in the European Parliament. My hope is that accession negotiations will be able to start already this year.’
Looking at future cooperation between both parliaments, MEPs expressed their willingness to deepen institutional ties and offer more support and expertise to their Ukrainian colleagues for the country’s path towards EU membership, including in the areas of alignment with EU laws and in post-war recovery. When it comes to the reconstruction of Ukraine, MEPs stressed it is essential to ‘build back better’ and link reconstruction efforts to a reform process that secures Ukraine’s European integration.
MEPs highlighted the need to establish an adequate governance architecture for reconstruction efforts that ‘ensures Ukrainian ownership’, and is transparent, accountable and inclusive, with the proper involvement of both the European Parliament and the Verkovna Rada.
Image by Guillaum Perijois/Via UnSplash/https://unsplash.com/license