War In Ukraine Will Forever Shape Europe's Future - Von Der Leyen

(MENAFN- UkrinForm) The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, believes Russia poses an existential threat not only Ukraine, but to the entire EU, so Vladimir Putin cannot be given a chance to erase the Ukrainian nation and reshape the future of Europe.

The EC president stated this in Strasbourg, addressing a European Parliament meeting dedicated to the most massive enlargement that took place 20 years ago, on May 1, 2004, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

"It is my duty today to pass a very stark message about the future of our Union. Because what happens in Ukraine will shape the future of our Union forever. We cannot overlook and cannot overstate that Russia poses an existential threat not only to Ukraine, but also to Europe," said von der Leyen.

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"A Putin win would not only change the map, it would not only mask the face of the Ukrainian nation, but it would change the course of European history. Our Union would never be the same. And Ukraine is carrying this heavy burden on its shoulders for all of us. And it is paying the ultimate price every day for that," she added.

The European Commission president believes there is only one language that Putin understands, and that is providing Ukraine with all possible means to defend itself.

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"Putin believed that we would not stand up for democracy and independence in Ukraine. He was wrong. Putin believed that U.S. military support would not pass the US Congress. He was wrong again. The military assistance from the United States and our assistance from the European Union is an encouragement for all of us to do even more," emphasized the president, whose words were met with applause.

In turn, resident of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola, said in her welcoming address that over the past two decades, Europe has faced unprecedented challenges, but it has no right to look away from new countries. From north to south, from east to west, from the Baltic to the Mediterranean, Europe stood united, she recalled, adding that today, a generation on, Europe stands with the people of Ukraine, the countries of the Western Balkans, Moldova, and Georgia, who look at Europe with the same sense of hope and faith.

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The meeting was also attended by children who were born exactly on May 1 in countries that joined the EU on that very day. Now these young people, 20 years of age, who ask their countries' politicians questions about the future of Europe.

It should be recalled that in the fifth wave of enlargement, Cyprus, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary and the Czech Republic joined the EU. This became the largest enlargement move in terms of territory, number of new members, and population. Subsequently, the European market became the largest united market in the world.

As Ukrinform reported earlier, in June 2022, Ukraine received the status of a candidate for joining the European Union as the heads of state and government of the European Union member states made the relevant decision.



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