It will take decades before Ukraine can be officially accepted into the European Union, French President Emmanuel Macron said on Monday.
During a speech to the European Union Parliament in Strasbourg, the re-elected French president instead proposed for Ukraine to join a “parallel European community” while waiting for a decision.
As per Macron, it would allow non-EU countries to have access to European security. His statements come after continued and intense fighting in the eastern Donbas region as it comes under attack from Russia.
Ukraine has applied for European Union membership in February this year, four(4) days after Russia called full-scale military operation against the country.
“We all know very clearly that the process to allow [Ukraine] to join would take several years indeed, probably several decades,” Macron said.
“That is the truth, unless we decide to lower the standards for accession,” he added. “And rethink the unity of our Europe.”
The French president said that a “parallel European community” should be considered an option instead of “a way of anchoring countries geographically in Europe and sharing our values,” the French president said.
His statement came after EU President Ursula von der Leyen announced that the Commission would publish its initial opinion on Ukraine’s accession to the EU in June.