Macron, Scholz, and Draghi plan to visit Kyiv on June 16, media report
French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi plan to visit Kyiv on June 16. The European Commission has to give its opinion on granting Ukraine the candidate status for EU membership on June 15.
The Italian newspaper La Stampa reported this.
According to journalists, the leaders of European countries will travel to Ukraine by train through Romania and Poland. Scholz, Macron, and Draghi are to pay their respects to President Volodymyr Zelensky. Earlier, Kyiv was visited by the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson, the President of Poland, Andrzej Duda, the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, and several other leaders.
According to the publication, Macron's and Scholz's trip could mean a change in their rhetoric about russia's invasion of Ukraine. Both leaders have been criticized for calling putin, blocking military aid, and more.
In mid-April, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz faced intense pressure from members of his ruling coalition to step up deliveries of heavy weapons such as tanks and fighter jets to help Ukraine fight russian troops.
"After initiating a historic reversal in Germany's previously frugal defense policy in the early stages of the war, Scholz has since appeared hesitant to go beyond initial supplies of protective equipment, munitions and rockets to take out Russian tanks and aircraft," Bloomberg says.
The latest criticism of Emmanuel Macron followed after his comments that it is important not to "humiliate russia." "I have lost count of the conversations I have had with vladimir putin since December. In all, about a hundred hours in transparency and at the request of Volodymyr Zelensky. We must not humiliate russia so that the day the fighting stops, we can build a way out through diplomatic channels. I am convinced that it is France's role to be a mediating power," Macron said.
On June 16, one of the topics of the leaders' meeting should be the unblocking of Ukrainian ports and the resumption of grain exports.
Journalists say the trip of Scholz, Macron, and Draghi will take place before the conclusion of the European Commission on the candidate status, before the meeting of the G7 countries and NATO members.
Bloomberg reports that the European Commission will provide its opinion on the status of the candidate on June 17. The European Commission is expected to recommend granting Ukraine EU candidate status but will set conditions for strengthening judicial reform and fighting corruption.