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We want Ukraine to join the EU – European Commission president says amid war with Russia

The European commission has said it wants Ukraine to join the European Union.

The statement made by the European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, comes as Ukraine defends itself against an invasion by Russia.

Speaking during a televised interview with Euronews Sunday, February 27, Leyen said;

“We have a process with Ukraine that is, for example, integrating the Ukrainian market into the single market. We have very close cooperation on the energy grid, for example. So many topics where we work very closely together and indeed over time, they belong to us. They are one of us and we want them in,” von der Leyen said. 

In a tweet Sunday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said he spoke to von der Leyen about strengthening Ukraine’s defense capabilities and its membership in the EU.

Becoming a member of the bloc is a complex procedure and Ukraine is currently not an official candidate for EU accession. But joining the EU, will make Ukraine more politically independent of Russia, give them more defence assurances from the EU and also open up more trade routes and possibilities with other European countries .

Responding to a question on the possibility of peace talks between Ukraine and Russia, von der Leyen told Euronews it was “important” Ukraine “agrees to the peace talks and that conditions are fine” but “trust in President Putin is completely broken and eroded.”

The interview comes after the EU’s announcement on Sunday to provide arms to Ukraine as its military tries to hold back Russian forces. 

“For the first time ever, the European Union will finance the purchase and delivery of weapons and other equipment to a country that is under attack,” the European commission statement said. 

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