‘Ukraine could become formal EU candidate in weeks’

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky formally handed over on Monday (18) to an envoy from the European Union a completed questionnaire on the country’s accession to the bloc, and said he believed that this step would lead Ukraine to gain the status of official candidate within the EU. of a few weeks.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen handed the questionnaire to Zelensky during a visit to Kiev on April 8, promising a faster process for Ukraine’s EU candidacy after Russia’s invasion of the country.

Zelensky presented the completed document to the EU’s envoy to Ukraine at a meeting, images released by his government showed.

“We firmly believe that this procedure (granting candidate status) will take place in the coming weeks and that it will be positive for the history of our people, given the price that has been paid on the road to independence and democracy,” the Ukrainian leader said during the meeting. .

Zelensky’s deputy chief of staff said earlier on Monday that he expected Ukraine to be granted formal EU candidate status in June during a scheduled meeting of the European Council, which comprises leaders of the bloc’s member states.

The European Commission, the EU’s executive body, will need to issue a recommendation on Ukraine’s compliance with the necessary membership criteria, he added.

As a candidate country, Ukraine would start negotiations on aligning its laws with the legal framework of the European Union.

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