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Questions surround Ukraine's eligibility to join EU

Jerome Hughes
Press TV, Brussels

EU leaders held video calls throughout Tuesday to prepare for a summit on Thursday and Friday at which Ukraine and Moldova will be granted 'candidate status' which means they move a step closer to joining the 27-country bloc.

Georgia will be placed to a stage just below candidate status. EU affairs ministers also met on Tuesday to lay the groundwork.

The head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, has tweeted 'Ukrainians are ready to die for the European perspective. We want them to live with us the European dream'. Not everyone is impressed given the current state of the EU.

Moscow is clearly being told to take note that the EU family is growing.

But the message seems to have fallen flat on its face. Vladimir Putin says he's no objections to Ukraine joining the EU. The Kremlin's issue has always been related to Kiev becoming a member of the NATO military alliance.

It's been reported that officials in the European Commission filled out the country's EU application form. A number of legislators point out the EU's own studies have found that Ukraine is highly corrupt. Therefore, they suggest, the country is not eligible. Analysts say it could take up to ten years for Ukraine to become a full member of the bloc.

In this context it has been suggested by some lawmakers here that the true motive is to, yet again, use Ukraine as a pawn to try and undermine Russia.

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