The special summit of EU heads of state and government on Thursday and Friday in Versailles, France should be a “sign of peace”, explained Chancellor Karl Nehamer (ÖVP).
On Thursday in Paris, Nahamer said the EU supports Ukraine “with what we do best, which is by peaceful means.” On the one hand, sanctions are crucial, and on the other hand, a ceasefire and humanitarian corridors are needed.
Nehamer sees humanitarian aid in Ukraine as a priority
On the sidelines of a meeting of the European People’s Party before the EU summit, the chancellor stressed that humanitarian aid to Ukraine is “the priority here now.” People who wish to leave the country must also be accepted into the European Union.
The summit will also discuss the prospects for Ukraine’s accession to the European Union. The EU must now stand in solidarity with Ukraine, Nehamer said, “in an uncomplicated and unbureaucratic way.” On the other hand, the joining procedure is an “incredibly long process”. The EU Commission is examining the request, “but the important thing is that we are helping Ukraine now.”
Investment package against the consequences of EU sanctions against Russia
In order to mitigate the consequences of EU sanctions against Russia, a new investment package is being discussed in the EU. One does not want to “get close to this”, Nahamer said. “We have always said clearly that in the event of a crisis, we must also invest in the crisis in order to secure the economy and jobs, and that line remains the same.”
Power supply: “The supply situation must be clear and safe”
Another topic for the meeting is power supply. “Our main task is to protect people in the European Union, and we are doing that to the best of our ability,” the chancellor said. The mode of supply should be “clear and safe”.
Niemer stressed that the heads of state and government of the European Union will also deal with the issue of “common defence”. It’s about increasing their defense budgets and creating interoperability within the union. The chancellor recently announced that he wants to increase the domestic defense budget to at least one percent of GDP.
Chancellor Nahamer: We must prepare for dialogue
The chancellor stressed that today is also a “very important day”, with the aim of meeting the foreign ministers of Ukraine and Russia in Turkey. The EU will do its utmost to ensure that “the willingness to engage in dialogue” is restored.
According to Niehmer, work is also underway to ensure that Russia and Ukraine talk “directly to each other”. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky should have a chance to speak to Russian Governor Vladimir Putin.
“Food practitioner. Bacon guru. Infuriatingly humble zombie enthusiast. Total student.”