| 27 February 2024, Tuesday |

Lithuanian president criticizes Macron’s suggestions on ‘European political community’

French President’s suggestions on establishing a “European political community” amid Russia’s ongoing war on Ukraine, were criticized by the Lithuania’s president on Tuesday.

Gitanas Nauseda told media outlets that he is in favor of the “establishment of political communities parallel to the EU” while he also finds the idea of founding a “European political community” as “an attempt to cover up the obvious lack of political will towards granting candidacy status to Ukraine.”

Pointing out that French President Emmanuel Macron’s idea “could lead to disappointments in Ukrainian sides on the issue,” Nauseda said: “This is definitely not good, and before suggesting such ideas, someone should ask Ukraine whether the idea would meet their expectations or not.”

He mentioned that he was “not disappointed” about Macron’s speech on how the process of Ukraine’s membership to the union could take years, stressing he was aware of this fact.

Ukraine applied for EU membership four days after Russia launched the war in late February. The bloc is yet to respond to President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s appeal to fast-track its membership.

In Strasbourg, Macron had made a case for a “parallel European community” in view of the EU’s strict membership criteria. He estimated that it will take several years or even decades for Ukraine to gain membership unless the EU lower’s the standards for accession.

According to Macron, Kyiv could join the proposed parallel European community until it officially gets accepted into the bloc.

At least 3,459 civilians have been killed and 3,713 others injured since Russia launched the war on Ukraine on Feb. 24, according to UN estimates. The true toll is feared to be much higher.

More than 5.91 million people have fled to other countries, with some 7.7 million people internally displaced, according to the UN refugee agency.

  • Anadolu Agency