"Hard work, determination and unity" is what she expects from Ukraine on the way to EU membership, says the President of the Commission. She lists procedures that can reduce the influence of oligarchs on the war-torn country and strengthen the rule of law.
EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has called on the candidate country Ukraine to step up the fight against corruption. Through the reforms that have already been enacted and the establishment of institutions, Ukraine has created "an impressive anti-corruption machine," she said in a video-transmitted speech to the Ukrainian parliament. "But now these institutions need options for action and the right people in the responsible positions," emphasized the head of the EU Commission.
She called for the new heads of the anti-corruption prosecutor's office and the national anti-corruption bureau to be appointed "as soon as possible". With a view to the planned reform of the constitutional court, von der Leyen added that it was "necessary to establish a procedure for selecting judges by law". The law passed by Ukraine, which is intended to reduce the influence of oligarchs, must be implemented in a "legally flawless manner". The commission presidents also called for the adoption of a media law that is in line with EU requirements.
At their summit in Brussels a week ago, the heads of state and government of the EU gave Ukraine and Moldova the status of EU accession candidates. However, this decision is only the first step in a lengthy accession process. "The next steps are within your reach, but they require hard work, determination and above all unity," von der Leyen told Ukrainian MPs. "It will be a long road, but Europe will be by your side every step of the way, no matter how long it takes, from those dark days of war to the moment you cross the threshold of our European Union."
Continued support for Kiev will also be a focus of the Czech EU Council Presidency. Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala has expressed the wish to organize a Ukraine summit with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy if possible. The Czech Republic took over the chair of the EU Council meetings on Friday from France. On January 1st, Sweden will take over the EU Council Presidency.