EU ambassadors have agreed “in principle” on the negotiating frameworks for the accession negotiations of Ukraine and Moldova, the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the EU announced late on Friday.

The Belgian Presidency said it would call the first intergovernmental conference — to formally begin membership negotiations — on June 25.

EU leaders took to X to congratulate the two countries for this “important step.”

“Congratulations to Ukraine and Moldova. This is a huge step forward in your journey towards the EU,” European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said on X. “The [European Commission] will stand by your side every step of the way.”

Ukraine applied to join the EU in February 2022, days after Russia launched its full-scale invasion. Moldova applied shortly after, in March 2022. Both were granted candidate status in June 2022 and the Commission confirmed earlier this month that both Ukraine and Moldova had met the requirements for starting negotiations.

Ukraine and its backers in the EU had been calling for the intergovernmental conference between Brussels and Kyiv to be held before Hungary takes over the rotating Presidency of the Council of the EU on July 1 — as Hungary has been one of the main opposers to Ukraine accession.

 

Politico