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EU Commission says Ukraine has ‘unconditional support’ in war with Russia

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen

The European Commission says Ukraine has the unconditional support of the European Union in the war with Russia.

Speaking at an event in Germany on Saturday, Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said Kiev needed to defend European values. “We stand by Ukraine's side without any ifs and buts.”

She said Ukraine “is fighting for our shared values, it is fighting for the respect of international law and for the principles of democracy and that is why Ukraine has to win this war.”

Von der Leyen made the remarks ahead of an EU-Ukraine summit in Kiev next week.

Earlier this month, she had a conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky during which “the parties discussed expected results of the next Ukraine-EU summit to be held on February 3 in Kiev and agreed to intensify preparatory work,” Zelensky’s office said.

Ukraine has been at war with Russia since Moscow launched its “special military operation” on February 24, 2022 with the declared aim of “de-Nazifying” Ukraine. Ever since, the EU, the United States and their allies have been providing Kiev with military hardware, despite warnings from Moscow that the move would prolong the war.

On Friday, European External Action Service Secretary-General Stefano Sannino accused Russia of taking the war into a “different stage" in response to a decision by NATO to send advanced armaments to Ukraine. Sannino was referring to a decision made by Germany and the United States this week to send advanced battle tanks to Ukraine.

Speaking at a news conference in Tokyo, Sannino said “this latest development in terms of armed supply is just an evolution of the situation and of the way Russia started moving the war into a different stage.” He said Russian President Vladimir Putin “has moved from a concept of [a] special [military] operation to a concept now of a war against NATO and the West.”

“Now we are speaking about a war with NATO and the West. Different story,” Sannino said.

Russia has already warned the promised delivery of Western tanks to Kiev is evidence of a direct and growing involvement by the United States and Europe in the war. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said last week the war in Ukraine is no longer a hybrid one, as it has almost escalated into “a real one" with the West continuing to ‘plot’ against Moscow. Lavrov said, “The goal is to destroy everything Russian, from language to culture, that has been in Ukraine for centuries and to prohibit people from speaking their mother tongue.”

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