(CNN) – Ukraine’s long-term goal of joining the European Union has been encouraged, an important step on the path to full membership after the 27 member states of the constituency agreed on Thursday to seek candidate status.
“Today is an important step on the path to the EU,” European Council President Charles Michael said on Twitter after talks in Brussels. The leaders also agreed to recognize Moldova’s initiative.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zhelensky said he “sincerely appreciates” the decision of the Council of Europe, which “marks a unique and historic moment in relations between the EU and Ukraine.”
The decision at the EU Council summit came a week after European Commission President Ursula von Der Leyen said the camp’s governing body believed Ukraine was worthy of candidate status, “clearly demonstrating the country’s will and determination. European values and standards.”
However, it may take several years for Ukraine to join the EU. The process is lengthy and requires the consent of 27 member states at almost every stage. This means that member states have many opportunities to negotiate their veto politically.
Before Ukraine can begin negotiations to join the federation, it must meet the Copenhagen criteria. Whether its institutions are sufficient to uphold European values, such as the EU’s interpretation of human rights and the rule of law; If you have inclusive democracy it will work.
Van der Leyen acknowledged that Ukraine was unlikely to meet these criteria when the country was at war, however, and had begun to move towards them long before the invasion.
If these criteria are met and all member states agree to begin negotiations in 35 chapters ranging from trade to law and civil society, Ukraine will have to carry out internal reforms to meet the required standards in each of these areas. Again, all member states must agree that these requirements are met before each chapter is closed.
Once this is done, the European Parliament and the legislature will have to approve the decision of the agenda, and finally, Ukraine will become a member of the European Union.
The UK, a changing think tank in Europe, has said that it takes on average four years and ten months for a country to join the EU. However, some Eastern European member states had to wait up to 10 years.
In addition to a long and complicated process, there are political ideas that frustrate Ukraine’s European dream.
Not all member states are interested in the possibility of Ukraine joining the federation. So at each stage one or more people will be tempted to bar themselves for something else that the EU is discussing, such as budget allocation.
France, Germany and Hungary were not very strong in their support. It was only after a visit to the Ukrainian capital, Kiev, that the leaders of France, Germany and Italy indicated their support for Ukraine’s candidate status. Hungary has also dragged its feet for various reasons, but above all it is Russia’s biggest ally in the EU.
Zhelensky has been criticized by some European countries for not providing enough weapons, as he finds himself in the midst of a desperate war to defend the Luhansk region in eastern Ukraine.
Concerns about corruption range from the transfer of power from the West to the East if Ukraine is accepted, and there are reasons for his suspicions. There is also concern about the area that Ukraine could consume in the EU budget.
Although all member states have supported this initiative, there is still ample opportunity for leaders to stand up in the years to come.
Ukraine’s long journey to the EU has only just begun. His position as a candidate could be a moral victory and send a strong message to Russia. But the truth is that Ukraine now, on the one hand, has to carry out reforms that are already very difficult, let alone, during the invasion of a foreign army, almost with one hand.
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