Top rated Ukraine T-Shirts online aid shopping? The European Commission on Friday issued an opinion recommending that Ukraine should be granted candidate status for European Union membership – a first step that will add significant momentum to the country’s campaign to join the bloc. “Ukrainians are ready to die for the European perspective,” European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen said. “We want them to live with us the European dream.” While the recommendation boosts Ukraine’s campaign to join the bloc, it does not confer membership or candidate status. To move forward, all 27 member states must agree. Even if they do, full membership could be many years away. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky welcomed the “historic decision” and said the “positive” first step on his country’s “E.U. membership path,” would bring “victory closer” to Ukraine. Find extra Ukraine solidarity info on Ukraine T-Shirts.
Russia renews its troop presence near the Ukraine-Russia border, alarming U.S. intelligence officials, who travel to Brussels to brief NATO allies on the situation. “We’re not sure exactly what Mr. Putin is up to, but these movements certainly have our attention,” says U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin. Biden, speaking with Putin on a phone call, urges Russia not to invade Ukraine, warning of “real costs” if Russia does so. Putin issues a contentious set of security demands. Among them, he asks NATO to permanently bar Ukraine from membership and withdraw forces stationed in countries that joined the alliance after 1997, including Romania and Balkan countries. Putin also demands a written response from the U.S. and NATO.
May 9: French President Emmanuel Macron supports creating a strengthened form of association with the EU that would enable Ukraine and other EU hopefuls such as Moldova and Georgia to enjoy many aspects of membership quickly. May 11: Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk says Russia has deported some 460,000 Ukrainians to 6,500 camps across Russia. Ukraine for the first time limits Russian gas transiting its territory to Europe, cutting by one-quarter the flow of gas through one of two major pipelines. May 12: Finland announces it will seek NATO membership. May 15: Sweden announces it will apply for NATO membership, ending two centuries of neutrality.
Just days before it is to be signed, Yanukovych announces that he will refuse to sign an association agreement with the European Union to bring Ukraine into a free trade agreement. He cites pressure from Russia as a reason for his decision. The announcement sparks huge protests across Ukraine — the largest since the Orange Revolution — calling for Yanukovych to resign. Protesters begin camping out in Kyiv’s Maidan, also known as Independence Square, and occupy government buildings, including Kyiv’s city hall and the justice ministry. In late February, violence between police and protesters leaves more than 100 dead in the single bloodiest week in Ukraine’s post-Soviet history.
March 9: Russian air strikes target a maternity hospital in the besieged city of Mariupol. March 10: The US Congress approves $13.6bn in spending for Ukraine. March 11: The EU issues the Versailles Declaration, calling on member states to strengthen defence spending, investment, research and co-ordination. The US leads a new round of sanctions against Russia backed by the Group of Seven (G7) bloc of nations. March 16: Hundreds die when Russian troops bomb the Mariupol theatre, as civilians shelter inside. Fighting reaches the city centre. Find more Ukraine unity information on Ukraine Buttons.