The conservative Austrian Freedom Party (FPÖ) has urged the country’s government to veto Ukraine’s membership after the European Commission gave the green light for preparatory accession talks to begin.
“It is political madness to seriously want to admit a country at war with another country into the EU,” said FPÖ President Herbert Kickl.
“Now that the elites in Brussels have dragged the EU and Austria into an economic war that is incompatible with our perpetual neutrality and is destroying our prosperity and our economy, to allow the Ukrainians to join would be to drag ourselves straight into that war,” he added.
Kickl also said that Ukraine does not meet the Copenhagen criteria for accession in the slightest, insisting the country has huge corruption problems, as evidenced by the several scandals that have come to light in recent months.
Corruption scandal: President of Ukraine’s top court arrested over $2.7 million bribe allegation
The head of the Supreme Court of Ukraine, Vsevoloda Knyazêv, was detained on suspicion of accepting a multi-million dollar bribe in return for a favorable court ruling for a billionaire businessman
Moreover, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has recently spoken out against holding presidential elections, arguing, among other things, that the current political divisions are inappropriate, Kickl added.
“It is undeniable that it is certainly difficult to hold elections in times of war. But these are the core elements of democracy and therefore a state that cannot hold elections can never be a member of the EU,” he said.
Hungary pours cold water on ‘absurd’ Ukraine EU accession talks after Brussels gives green light
Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said the EU’s enlargement policy should “serve to expand peace and not bring war” to the bloc
Commission President Ursula von der Leyen told a press conference on Wednesday that Kyiv had completed “well over 90 percent of the necessary steps” required for preparatory membership talks to begin and recommended these discussions begin immediately after a summit of EU leaders in Brussels on Dec. 14.
Responding to the announcement, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó insisted Hungary was adamant that until there is peace in Ukraine the country should not be eligible for EU membership.