Ukraine, Von der Leyen in Kiev: “EU at your side as long as necessary”

The President of the European Commission meets Zelensky: “Congratulations on military successes”

“Dear Volodymyr, you will have your European friends by your side as long as necessary, we will be friends forever”. Thus the president of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen in a statement in Kiev, after meeting the Ukrainian president Zelensky.

Visiting Kiev for the third time since the war broke out, the President of the European Commission congratulated Zelensky on the successes of the last few days in the counter-offensive against Russia. “I also want to congratulate you on your military achievements,” von der Leyen said at a joint press conference with the Ukrainian president.

“I know there is a need for consolidation, but it is still impressive to see the courage of the Ukrainian armed forces – he added – Their success has raised the morale, I would say, not only of the Ukrainian people, but also of all your friends” .

Ukraine’s accession process to the EU “is on the right track”, said von der Leyen, adding: “It is striking to see the speed, determination and precision with which you are progressing”, he added, addressing the Ukrainian president.

“We agreed that we need to work as much as possible to ensure that Ukraine has more business, more income, so that it is possible for Ukraine to have uniform access to the single European market,” he said.

The Ukrainian president presented the president of the European Commission with the first-class recognition of the Order of Yaroslav the Wise, a knightly order of the former Soviet republic. The president herself, who yesterday after the speech on the State of the Union in Strasbourg moved to Kiev together with the first lady Olena Zelenska, who was her guest in the plenary of the European Parliament, gave the news via social media. “Thank you, it’s a great honor – said the president via social media – I accept it in the name of all EU citizens and as a symbol of our strong bond”. Von der Leyen also posted a photo with the president as she hands her the prize.