Zelensky calls for Ukraine to be granted EU candidate status in speech to Czech parliament
In his video address to both houses of the Czech Parliament on Wednesday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called for Ukraine to be granted European Union candidate status. He said the move would strengthen the European community and would also be an expression of support for European ideas and values, which in his view are currently under attack by Russia. Ukraine applied to join the EU in March shortly after being attacked by Russian troops on February 24, but the process of being granted membership can take years.
Mr. Zelensky also thanked the Czech Republic for welcoming hundreds of thousands of refugees from Ukraine and for providing the country with weapons when they were most needed. He said that a struggle for the future of Europe is taking place, and that Russia would not stop at Ukraine if they were defeated. He used the phrase "We are with you, be with us" several times during his speech, echoing the words with which Czech Radio addressed the Czech people during the Warsaw Pact invasion of 1968.