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&laquo ; Now is not the time for half-measures or hesitation”, pleads Zelensky to the EU | War in Ukraine

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Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky calls on the European Union to show a united front and not “give a victory” to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Pictured is Mr. Zelensky during a visit to Lithuania last July. (Archive photo)

Agence France-Presse

Voice synthesis, based on artificial intelligence , allows you to generate spoken text from written text.

Volodymyr Zelensky on Thursday urged European leaders not to abandon Ukraine and to regain their unity by sending a clear message of support to his country at war with Russia.

I ask you one thing, do not betray the citizens and their faith in Europe, declared the Ukrainian president in a videoconference speech to the 27 meeting at a summit in Brussels.

Do not give [Vladimir] Putin this first – and only – victory of the year, he urged, believing that now was not the time for half-measures or to hesitation.

Today is the day for a political decision in response to this that we have accomplished. This involves opening accession negotiations with Ukraine, he insisted.

Kiev is waiting for a green light from European leaders on the opening of these negotiations, for the moment out of reach due to stubborn refusal of Viktor Orban's Hungary. Unanimity of the twenty-seven is in fact required on questions of enlargement.

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There is no reason to discuss anything, because the conditions have not been met, said the latter from the start of the summit. The nationalist leader also opposes budgetary support of 50 billion euros [$73 billion] for Ukraine.

The Ukrainian president, for his part, repeats that his country has fulfilled all the conditions demanded by Brussels to launch the process and is impatiently awaiting this mark of support from the Europeans, at a time when the negative signals coming from Washington are multiplying.

< p class="StyledBodyHtmlParagraph-sc-48221190-4 hnvfyV">For weeks, clouds have been accumulating above Ukraine. Its military counter-offensive has failed to produce a decisive breakthrough and Western aid, essential to the war effort, is blocked.

At the very moment when the crucial summit in Brussels began, Vladimir Putin displayed, from Moscow, his confidence in a Russian victory. Almost along the entire length of the line of contact, our armed forces are improving their positions, he said.

If Putin wins in Ukraine, there is a real risk that his aggression will not stop there, warned the Secretary General of the Atlantic Alliance (NATO), Jens Stoltenberg.

For the head of European diplomacy Josep Borrell, the continuation and increase of aid to Ukraine is an existential question for the ;EU.

Unity is the key, insisted the President of the European Parliament Roberta Metsola.

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Roberta Metsola, president of the European Parliament, echoed the Ukrainian president's call for unity. (File photo)

We still need to know what the Hungarian Prime Minister, often alone against everyone, intends to obtain this time.

Hungary demands Union European Union that it releases all funds due to it, but which have been frozen due to breaches of the rule of law.

She obtained the release of 10 billion euros [$15 billion] on Wednesday, after a decision by the European Commission which provoked the anger of MEPs. Several of them denounced the weakness of Brussels in the face of blackmail by the Hungarian Prime Minister.

In his speech, Volodymyr Zelensky detailed the timetable possible: open accession negotiations today, and approve, in March, the negotiating framework to move forward.

Will the Hungarian leader finally give in to pressure from his European partners, as he has done in the past, after having obtained certain concessions?

Viktor Orban is the most experienced European leader within the European Council, which brings together the heads of state or government of the 27, explains a European official, on condition of anonymity.

I think he knows exactly how not to find himself alone in the corner of the ring, isolated from all the other European countries, assures- he.

Unless Viktor Orban is this time tempted to go all the way.

Asked on Wednesday about a possible Huxit, an exit of Hungary from the EU, the Prime Minister said: I do not want to leave, but to take power [.. .] from within, bringing together more and more countries.

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