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European Parliament condemns Orbán and urges EU to approve opening of membership talks with Ukraine

Wednesday, 13 December 2023, 15:44
European Parliament condemns Orbán and urges EU to approve opening of membership talks with Ukraine
Stock photo: Getty Images

The European Parliament has called on the EU summit to approve the decision to start EU accession negotiations with Ukraine and condemned remarks made by the Hungarian Prime Minister about Ukraine's membership.

Source: European Pravda, citing a non-binding resolution of the parliament adopted on 13 December, approved by 468 votes in favour and 9 against.

Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) called on EU leaders to adopt a decision at their summit on 14-15 December to start accession negotiations with Ukraine and Moldova, as well as with Bosnia and Herzegovina, contingent upon the implementation of certain reforms.


MEPs also called for Georgia to be granted EU candidate status. They welcomed the new Growth Plan for the Western Balkans and urged EU leaders to adopt negotiation frameworks without delay once the respective requirements for each candidate country are met, so that accession talks can be started promptly.

MEPs acknowledged the interest many countries have in joining the EU and the political will to join, and recognised the serious efforts being made to meet membership requirements. They also welcomed the Armenian government’s readiness to draw closer to the European Union.

MEPs believe that the EU should set clear timelines for candidate countries to join the EU by the end of this decade.

However, there should be no fast track to membership, the European Parliament said.

MEPs insist on adherence to the Copenhagen criteria to ensure that candidate countries and potential candidate countries demonstrate a consistent and steadfast commitment to democracy, the rule of law, human rights, respect for and protection of minorities, and economic reforms.

The parliamentarians called on the next European Commission to appoint a Commissioner for Enlargement and to ensure a clear separation of bilateral issues from EU enlargement policy.

MEPs strongly condemned the statements made by the Prime Minister of Hungary regarding the start of membership talks between Ukraine and the EU, as well as the change in Hungary's policy towards Kosovo. They emphasised that Viktor Orbán's remarks are hindering the EU enlargement process and warned of potential negative consequences of Hungary's presidency of the EU Council in July 2024.

The resolution also emphasised the need for internal reforms within the EU, parallel to the enlargement process, to strengthen the European Union's ability to integrate new members effectively. This includes the introduction of qualified majority voting, which would also apply to decisions on foreign policy and security policy, as well as areas related to the accession process.


  • As European Pravda reported earlier, the European Commission expects that the decision to initiate accession negotiations for Ukraine and Moldova will prompt the EU to propose a revised framework for their procedure.
  • President Volodymyr Zelenskyy believes that if the EU does not approve the decision to start accession negotiations with Ukraine because it is blocked by Hungary, it would imply that Russian President Vladimir Putin had directly vetoed the decision.

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