Scholz in Kyiv


Kyiv (dpa) – On Thursday morning, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, French President Emmanuel Macron and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi arrived in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv on a special train. They plan to hold talks there with President Volodymyr Zelenskiy about further support for the country, which is under attack from Russia, and about Ukraine’s desire to join the EU. Scholz has always stressed that he would only travel to Kyiv if there were concrete things to discuss. Zelenskiy is demanding that further heavy weapons should be supplied and that the EU should already agree to Ukraine’s candidacy for membership at its summit in Brussels next week.

Though the Romanian President Klaus Iohannis is to join the group in Kyiv, he wanted to arrive by a different route. Since mid-March, numerous heads of state and government have travelled to Ukraine, which has been fighting off an attack by Russian forces for almost four months now. This visit is undoubtedly the most significant, however: Scholz, Macron and Draghi represent the EU’s three most populous and economically powerful countries. All three states belong to the G7 alliance of democratic economic powers. Germany currently holds the presidency of this group, while France holds the EU presidency.

The visit by the three heads of state and government had been planned for some time. Despite some media reports, it had not been confirmed until recently for security reasons. Scholz had already flown to southern Poland on Wednesday evening. From the border town of Przemysl, the special train with nine carriages departed for Kyiv shortly before midnight. The airspace is closed because of the war. The overland route is the only remaining option, even for presidents and heads of government. Many war refugees entered the EU via Przemysl – and have also been returning by this route for some time.





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