Italy says major EU countries oppose giving Ukraine candidate status

Italian Prime Minister Draghi said that only Italy supports granting EU candidate status to Ukraine, while other major countries in the bloc oppose.

“Almost all the major member states of the EU (European Union) are opposed to giving Ukraine a candidate status, with the exception of Italy. It is currently uncertain about Ukraine’s candidacy status due to the opposition of Ukraine. these countries,” Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi said at a press conference in Brussels, Belgium, on May 31.

The Italian Prime Minister added that the European Commission could come up with a plan to speed up the approval process of Ukraine’s application for EU candidate status at a meeting this month. According to the schedule on the website, the European Council will hold its meeting on June 23-24.

Mr. Draghi also noted that most countries have to wait many years to become an EU candidate, let alone become an EU member.

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi at a press conference in Brussels, Belgium, on May 31.  Photo: AFP.

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi at a press conference in Brussels, Belgium, on May 31. Image: AFP.

Ukraine applied to join the EU on February 28, four days after Russia launched a military campaign. The EU quickly took note of Ukraine’s aspirations and in April handed it over with questionnaires for discussions about joining the bloc, a key step in the process of considering admission to Kiev. Ukraine on April 18 announced that it had completed this questionnaire.

Despite the application, Ukraine is not yet considered a candidate to join the EU as this status needs to be agreed by the union member states. Currently, only five countries are recognized as candidates to join the EU, including Albania, the Republic of North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey.

Ukrainian President Zelensky has repeatedly urged the EU to allow rapid accession under what he described as a “new special procedure”, but did not give details. The leaders of France, Germany, Spain and the Netherlands have opposed this proposal for fast admission.

A country can only apply to the EU when it meets certain conditions, including having a free market economy, a stable democracy, and accepting all EU legislation as well as the EUR. The country submits the application to the Council of Europe, which requests the European Commission to assess the candidate’s ability to meet the criteria.

If the committee’s assessment is favorable, the European Council must agree on a formal framework for the negotiation process between ministers and ambassadors of the EU governments and the candidate country.

Ngoc Anh (Theo European Agency)

Leave a Comment