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Ukraine is making diplomatic efforts to persuade skeptics to join the EU. And surprised by the resistance of Portugal – Columnist

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The first step should have a positive result – but the path that can lead Ukraine to membership in the European Union is far from being so simple. Aware of the difficulties, Volodymyr Zelensky’s country in recent offensives has gambled on “Operation Charm” to convince Europe’s most skeptical leaders to give the green light to his candidacy – and is surprised by the resistance shown by Portugal. .

At a time when the first opinion, still preliminary, of the European Commission will be within a few days – it will be made public on June 17 – and this precedes the summit where European leaders will comment on this issue, on June 23 and 24, Ukraine is focused on seducing heads of state and governments that are still not convinced.

How European Portal Euroactivthis first step should bring good news to Ukraine: according to several European sources with knowledge of the matter, the European Commission document should be worded “cautiously” but positively.

The positive recommendation for Ukraine states bloombergHowever, it should include some conditions, in particular, to strengthen the rule of law in Ukraine and anti-corruption legislation.

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The problem is that even if the European Commission ends up in favor, this is only the beginning of the process. Soon after, Ukraine will have to face skepticism from some member states for several reasons: on the one hand, the country is still at war; there are other countries that have applied many years ago – the process can take many years, maybe a decade – and are still waiting for a response; and, in addition to the current military situation, there may be fundamental doubts about the harmonization of legislation and adherence to the rule of law in Ukraine, which, in the opinion of some countries, cannot be ignored in order to accelerate the accession of the country.

Portugal is among the countries whose fluctuations are of concern at the highest level in Ukraine. Last month, Olga Stefanyshina, Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine in charge of the European Integration Portfolio, did some calculations and concluded that skeptical “six-seven countries” on expedited entry to Ukraine – naming examples Germany, Portugal, Spain, Austria and Sweden.

But if, meanwhile, Ukraine is convinced that many of these doubts dissipated — Stefanyshina told Euroactiv about the “positive results” in Austria, where Germany has also taken a more flexible stance, and other countries such as Finland and Denmark are waiting to see the position of the European Commission — Portugal’s resistance surprised: “We also have a country that is quite unexpectedly skeptical, Portugal, the country with the largest Ukrainian community, whose opposition is surprising.”

In April, António Costa said in an interview organized by the Club of Journalists, after Zelenskiy said that Portugal “almost” defended Ukraine’s accession to the EU, that the urgency of the military situation “is never solved by enlargement, only by solutions compatible with urgency.” For Costa, “deepening the Association Agreement with the European Union” would be “ideal space”.

Two guarantees, a promise and a brake on Zelensky. Interview with Antonio Costa

And he explained why: “Putting all the chips in a process that is uncertain, necessarily lengthy and prone to numerous vicissitudes is a risk that I consider very large. There is another dimension: whether the European Union itself is ready for further enlargement steps. So far, the European Union has not been able to accept countries like Albania and Montenegro, which have a completely different dimension than Ukraine.” But he ensured that Portugal would not say a resounding no.

Then, in May, the Portuguese prime minister repeated that he was “recognized and satisfied with a clear European version of Ukraine”, which he recognized as “part of the European family”, but again recalled the “complexity” of the process and left warnings: “We all know well what EU rules. We must find a solution that meets what is a priority for Ukraine at the moment: military, economic, humanitarian support and an undeniable commitment to a huge recovery effort.”

During his visit to Kyiv, he assured that he would accept the Ukraine option with “open arms”, promising “technical support” and “exchange of experience” on the very process of Portugal’s accession. Zelensky intervened: “I understand that there are countries that have been waiting for many years, but I don’t think it’s right to compare Ukraine with countries that have peacefully gone through the path of accession. We are fighting and fighting for freedom and European values.

Precisely to overcome resistance or hesitation, senior Ukrainian officials have been visiting European capitals in recent weeks to make one last major diplomatic effort at this critical time to secure membership since the candidacy was presented in March.

“It is very important that the EU does not play the game of promises,” Ruslan Stefanchuk, a spokesman for the Ukrainian parliament, told reporters in Brussels this week. And this at a time when – as António Costa has already done – several European leaders are talking about alternative solutions for a simple and fast-tracked accession of Ukraine.

“At least there is no consensus on saying no to Ukraine because no leader will be able to say that publicly. Instead, it is about modalities,” Olga Stefanishyna added this week, quoted by Euroactiv, referring to the strongest supporters of accession, such as Italy, Ireland or Greece. According to Bloomberg, most countries will even be in favor of joining.

Another obstacle at this stage for Ukraine may be that it belongs to the same group of countries that are now trying to start the same process in the context of the war: Moldova and Georgia. The Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister acknowledged in the same conversation that Ukraine would be “very concerned” to be considered part of this group of countries “because they have very different realities”, especially in terms of legislation and rule of law. which go beyond concern for Russia.

“Putting three countries in one bag increases uncertainty and helps skeptics say no, because for Ukraine the solution may be clear, but not for Georgia and not for Moldova,” he warned. On June 17, it will be seen whether the first step has been successfully taken so that Ukraine can formally obtain the status of a candidate country and thus begin the formal nomination of its candidacy.

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G20 summit: Draghi says Putin’s personal involvement ruled out

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Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi said on Tuesday that the presence of Russian President Vladimir Putin at the next G20 summit in Bali was ruled out by the Indonesian presidency of the body.

At the summit of the group of seven most industrialized countries of the world (G7), which ended this Tuesday in Germany, they asked about The Kremlin’s announcement that Putin would attend the Bali summit in November, Draghi said that Indonesian President Joko Widodo ruled out the possibility.

Widodo “was categorical: he [Putin] not to come. What could happen – I don’t know what will happen, but what it could happen, maybe it’s remote interference“said Draghi, whose the country will hand over the G20 presidency to Indonesia in Bali.

The information has not been This was stated by the head of the Indonesian state, Joko Widodo. who will meet on Tuesday in Kyiv with his Ukrainian counterpart in an attempt to achieve a ceasefire in the conflict caused by the Russian invasion.

Joko Widodo, who attended Monday’s G7 summit in Germany, is already on his way to Kyiv, Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said. accompanies the head of state in a video message.

After a visit to Ukraine and meeting with President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky, The Indonesian leader is heading to Russia, where he will meet with Putin on Thursday, becoming the first Asian leader to visit the two countries since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine on February 24.

Before leaving on Sunday, Widodo said he was going to ask Zelensky and Putin an immediate ceasefire and the search for a peace agreement through dialogue.

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in spite of pressure from countries such as the US, Canada and Australia to keep Putin out of the G20 summit from 11 to 13 November.on the island of Bali, Indonesia still retains its invitation to the Russian leader.

In April, the President of Indonesia, publicly known as Jokowi, sent Zelensky a G20 invitation and said Indonesia was ready to “contribute to the peace effort”.

In the past decade, Russia has been excluded from the group of industrialized countries then known as the G8, renamed the G7 after the 2014 invasion of the Ukrainian Crimean peninsula.

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“War will end only when Ukrainians surrender,” Moscow says – Observer

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Russia announced on Tuesday that it would end its offensive in Ukraine, launched more than four months ago, only when the Kyiv authorities and the Ukrainian army surrender and accept “all Russian conditions.”

The Ukrainian side may end [a guerra] during the dayThis was stated by the official representative of the Kremlin (President of Russia) Dmitry Peskov, whose words are quoted by the French news agency AFP.

For this, according to Peskov, it is enough that the Kyiv authorities ordered the “nationalist detachments” and Ukrainian soldiers to lay down their arms and that “all the conditions set by Russia” be met.

“Then it will all be over in one day,” a spokesman for Russian President Vladimir Putin told reporters in Moscow.

Peskov reacted to the appeal of the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky to the leaders of the G7. do everything to end the war before the end of the yeardue to the harsh winter in Ukraine.

Zelenskiy asks G7 for defense systems and solutions to restore and lockdown wheat

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The leaders of the seven most industrialized countries (Germany, Canada, the United States, France, Italy, Japan and the United Kingdom) and the European Union (EU) conclude their meeting on Tuesday in Elmau in southern Germany ahead of the summit. NATO in Madrid.

No deadline or timetable has been set by the Russian side for ending what Moscow officially calls a “special military operation” in Ukraine, Peskov said.

“We are guided by the statements of our president,” he said.

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Peskov again assured thatspecial operation going according to plan“.

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NATO will strengthen troops in Eastern Europe and identify Russia as the main threat

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At the Madrid summit, NATO will identify Russia as its biggest and most immediate threat and must approve the strengthening of high readiness forces and military personnel in Eastern Europe.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said at a press conference in Brussels that the leaders of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) countries hope to reach an agreement in Madrid this week. to increase the high readiness force to more than 300,000 soldiers, as well as to strengthen the battalions stationed in Eastern Europe.

In Madrid, the Atlantic Alliance for Defense and Military Cooperation between European and North American countries, Russia should also be identified as the biggest and most immediate threat to NATO member states in the organization’s new strategic concept, this will be adopted at the summit, Stoltenberg said.

Strategic Concept, one of the key documents of NATO, outlines the security issues facing the organization and outlines political and military priorities develop to resist them.

The Madrid summit is taking place in the context of the Russian invasion of Ukraine on February 24 and will update NATO’s strategic concept for the last decade in Lisbon in 2010, which was then marked by an intention to move closer from the Atlantic to an alliance with Russia.

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