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Imminent accession unlikely: the EU wants to support the Ukrainian army with another 500 million euros – Politics

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As a result of the war in Ukraine, the European Union wants to spend much more money on its defense and extend military support to Ukraine. The doubling of EU funds for arms and ammunition for Ukraine to one billion euros was discussed at the EU summit in Versailles, France, on Friday. However, President Volodymyr Zelenskyj expressed his disappointment with the EU.

At their summit at the Palace of Versailles, the EU heads of state and government agreed on a “significant increase in defense spending”, as the final declaration said. French president and host Emmanuel Macron has called the €100 billion package for the Bundeswehr, which was decided two weeks ago, “historic”.

[Alle aktuellen Nachrichten zum russischen Angriff auf die Ukraine bekommen Sie mit der Tagesspiegel-App live auf ihr Handy. Hier für Apple- und Android-Geräte herunterladen.]

Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) reported after the summit that several countries had praised Germany and wanted to do the same. “Overall, this will strengthen Europe’s defense capabilities,” the Chancellor said.

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell has proposed doubling military aid to Ukraine to 1 billion euros. According to several summit participants, this received cautious approval. Scholz said that from his point of view no one is averse to the EU continuing to be involved.

Following the Russian attack on Ukraine, EU countries agreed to €500 million for the joint shipment of arms and ammunition to Ukraine, a first for a country at war. EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen spoke of a “turning point”, while leftist politicians in the European Parliament see the move as “breaking a taboo”. The Commission is now going to present a proposal for the use of more funds.

EU countries disagree on early accession of Ukraine

However, Ukrainian President Zelenskyy was disappointed with the EU: the results of the summit “were not what we expected,” Zelenskyy said in a video message. “The European Union must do more for us.” In Kiev and other cities there is no electricity, no gas, no water. A “humanitarian catastrophe” is imminent, he warned.

In particular, member states could not agree on Ukraine’s demand for early EU membership. The Versailles declaration simply states that Ukraine is “part of our European family.”

[Lesen Sie auch: Europa darf jetzt nicht versagen: Worauf warten wir? Die Ukraine muss schnell in die EU (T+)]

In addition to the Benelux countries and France, Germany also made it clear at the informal summit that there could be no emergency accession procedure for a country that was in the middle of a war. Eastern EU countries such as Lithuania and Slovenia, on the other hand, supported Ukraine and also expressed disappointment. They want to raise the issue again at the regular EU summit in Brussels in two weeks.

The summit also dealt with the economic strengthening of the EU. Scholz initially rejected Macron’s push for a second €1bn aid package modeled on the Corona relief fund in the amount of €750bn. The chancellor emphasized that so far only “about 70 billion” of the money has been spent. Therefore, there is nothing wrong with using the rest for the economy. (AFP)

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