Photo: Volodymyr Oleksandrovych Zelensky on Facebook
Ukraine is looking for a better solution to its current conflict with Russia.
According to a post from his verified Facebook page, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has officially signed an application to join the European Union.
The deputy head of the president’s office, Andrii Sybiha, tweeted: “[Zelensky] has just signed a historical document – Ukraine’s application for European Union membership.” The prime minister and head of parliament for Ukraine have signed a joint statement as well, he added.
Zelensky has released a video encouraging the European Union to immediately allow Ukraine into their union. In addition, he appealed for peace and stability in his country, asking Russian troops that are currently occupying parts or all under control to return home.
“Our goal is to be with the Europeans and, most importantly, to be equal,” said Zelensky, as per a translation from The Guardian. “I am confident that it is fair. I am confident we have deserved it. I am confident that all this is possible.”
Ukraine has been in a provisional association agreement with the European Union since 2017, but it is not recognized as an official prospect for EU membership.
Zelensky’s request aligns with his statements made during the weekend when he openly thrust Ukraine’s assent into the EU and talked about the matter with European leaders.
“It is a crucial moment to close the long-standing discussion once and for all and decide on Ukraine’s membership in the #EU,” wrote Zelensky on Twitter Saturday, saying that he had communicated with Charles Michael, the European Council President.
Michael replied in a tweet: “#Ukraine and its people are family. Further concrete support is on its way.”
On Sunday, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said in an interview that Ukraine is “one of us and we want them in” the European Union.
She said there would be an extensive process to enter the EU’s market, but it could not come immediately with this merger because they have a lot of work ahead in sectors such as energy.
The EU’s website emphasizes that “becoming a member of the EU is a complex procedure which does not happen overnight.”