Greece backs Ukraine’s EU appeal

Greece backs Ukraine’s EU appeal

Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis expressed his full solidarity with Ukraine and his support for its European prospects following the appeal of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy for immediate European Union membership.

“Full solidarity with President Zelenskyy and the people of Ukraine. We welcome Ukraine’s EU choice; they are one of us,” said Mitsotakis in response to Zelenskyy’s appeal to the EU to allow for immediate Ukrainian accession through an emergency framework.

“Our goal is to be together with all Europeans,” said Zelenskyy on Monday.

Mitsotakis will address Parliament this morning to brief lawmakers about all the latest diplomatic moves made by the country.

At the same time, Greece called on Russia on Monday to respect international humanitarian law and cease attacks on civilian populations. 

Speaking to state broadcaster ERT, Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexandros Papaioannou criticized a statement by the Russian Embassy in Athens, which accused the government of “anti-Russian propaganda” and urged critics of Moscow’s actions to “sober up.” 

Papaioannou said that the phraseology of the statement was “totally unacceptable.”

Papaioannou was speaking a day after the Foreign Ministry lodged a demarche with Russian Ambassador to Greece Andrey Maslov over aerial strikes on the villages of Sartana and Buhas in eastern Ukraine in which 10 ethnic Greeks died.

“We reiterated to the Russian side that they have an obligation to respect international law. Respect for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity is non-negotiable,” Papaioannou said.

Meanwhile, on Monday two C-130 transport aircraft departed for Poland carrying new defense equipment with a final destination in Ukraine as part of Greece’s decision to dispatch help. 

The leader of center-left Movement for Change (KINAL), Nikos Androulakis, lauded Greece and Europe’s decision to help Ukraine. “We have always been on the side that respected international law. We must be on the forefront of humanitarian aid as well as any refugee relocation program,” he stressed.

Meanwhile, the US thanked Greece on Sunday for its “steadfast support” over Ukraine, while expressing his condolences over the ethnic Greeks killed during Russian air strikes in Mariupol on Saturday.

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