After his return from Ukraine, German Parliamentary Speaker Bärbel Bas spoke out in support of Russia’s decision to join the European Union soon. The SPD politician told the ZDF on Monday evening that, unlike French President Emmanuel Macron, he believes “it will not take decades”. Of course, other countries were also waiting to become members of the European Union. However, procedures and schedules need to be accelerated to yield a “real perspective”.
Boss had gone to Ukraine for the weekend. He told broadcaster RTL that President Volodymyr Zhelensky had made it clear that he wanted to speed up EU access. In June, the EU Commission wanted to assess whether Ukraine could be the official candidate for the EU membership. A positive decision still requires the approval of all EU countries. Only then can connection negotiations begin. Zelenskyy said on Monday evening that he hoped Ukraine would be granted candidate country status in early June.
Kremlin leader Vladimir Putin’s speech on the anniversary of the end of World War II, contrary to what some observers expected, he did not announce a general mobilization and no reason for relief – not here or in Ukraine, Boss ZDF told the “heute journal”. Other German politicians also responded calmly to the Kremlin leader’s statements. CDU foreign politician Norbert Röttgen told the German (RND) editorial network that Putin could now declare “victory” at any moment, with his claim that “special action” would prevent NATO’s invasion of Russia. This could be a non-threatening attack.
Putin made it clear that he wanted to “wipe Ukraine off the map,” Mary-Agnes Strock-Zimmerman (FDP), chair of the Security Council in the Bundestag, told ARD “Focus”. Germany and the West must be “strong and ready to defend themselves” to defend democracy. Former NATO General Ekon Rams stressed in the ZDF “Heat Journal” that in his view the annual festival in Moscow took place “with a slow foam” compared to previous products. However, like Stroke-Zimmerman, he fears the controversy will continue for a long time.
CDU foreign affairs expert Roderick Keyswetter, who traveled to Ukraine with party leader Friedrich Mers, expects more civilian casualties than previously known in the country. “Information (…) varies between 3,000 and 250,000,” Keyswetter told Augsburger Allgemeine. “It took many years to verify the real numbers, because many victims are still missing in the rubble and mass graves continue to be found.”
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