Today, during his visit to East-Viru County, President of the Riigikogu (Parliament of Estonia) Jüri Ratas participated in the video conference of the Nordic-Baltic (NB8) Speakers of Parliaments on Ukraine, and in the video meeting of the Speakers of the European Union’s National Parliaments hosted by President of the European Parliament Roberta Metsola, which was also attended by Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada (Parliament) of Ukraine Ruslan Stefanchuk.
All Speakers of Parliaments who took the floor at the video meetings underlined that Russia’s attack was a brutal war crime and Putin’s regime had to end bloodshed and military activities in Ukraine immediately.
Ratas told his counterparts that the European Union had to give Ukraine all the assistance it needed in the accession process, and Estonia was ready to share its accession experience and support Ukraine’s development.
At the meeting of the Nordic and Baltic Speakers, Ratas said that the countries of our region had to coordinate supporting of Ukraine as much as possible. “Today, Ukraine needs our strong political and economic support. As well as direct military aid and humanitarian aid,” Ratas said. “Many thanks to all the countries that have shown admirable unity and have already stretched out a helping hand, but the assistance must go on and there is still much to be done, because Putin’s war continues and Ukraine needs our help now more than ever.”
Ratas thinks that the Western countries have to present a united front to isolate Russia and Belarus in all spheres, from suspending of their membership in international organisations to economy, culture and sports. “It is not only Ukraine’s war, but they are also fighting now for the security and democracy of the whole Europe,” Ratas pointed out.
The Speakers of all parliaments expressed support to Ukraine and highlighted the need for joint strong sanctions in order to stop Russia’s aggressive military activities and information war. The Speakers of the Nordic and Baltic Parliaments presented an outline of the humanitarian and military aid provided. The Speakers from Finland and Sweden admitted that, for them, granting military aid was an exceptional decision. The Baltic and Polish Speakers also described how they helped the war refugees.
The video conference of the Nordic-Baltic Speakers was followed by the video meeting in the European Parliament, which was attended by Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Ruslan Stefanchuk, who gave an overview of the current situation in the country. He thanked the Member States for their support and introduced Ukraine’s application for membership in the European Union. The Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada underlined that the sancions had to continue and also strongly extend to Belarus. In conclusion, he expressed hope that green corridors would be established soon for giving humanitarian aid because several cities were without electricity and there was a shortage of foodstuffs.
The participants of the video meeting expressed complete support to Ukraine and stressed that granting of the EU membership perspective and the status of a candidate state had to take into account the criteria of accession to the Union and be in line with Article 49 of the Treaty on the European Union.