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Zelensky: We want to be in EU in 2 years, in NATO after victory
President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Feb. 11 that Ukraine wants to be a member of the European Union in two years and should be part of the NATO alliance after the country’s victory over Russia.
Zelensky made these statements during a meeting with top managers of the investment funds company J.P. Morgan. He added that Ukraine would also need security guarantees.
In his address to the European Parliament on Feb. 9 during a historic visit to Brussels, Zelensky emphasized that Ukraine was fighting for the “European way of life” and vowed that his country would keep fighting as long as it takes.
Earlier on Feb. 2, Zelensky said that "Ukraine deserves" negotiations on EU membership in 2023.
Ukraine officially applied for EU membership in late February 2022, just days after Russia began bombing Kyiv and other cities, starting an all-out war against the country. Ukraine was granted candidacy status in June.
Ukraine’s road to full EU membership is expected to take years. Ukraine has suffered from endemic corruption, and the slow progress of judicial reforms was a cause for concern before Russia plunged the country into a full-scale war.
It often takes many years for candidate countries to have accession negotiations opened by the EU. Macron said in May 2022 that it could take “decades” for Ukraine to join the bloc.
While Ukraine’s hopes of a fast track to full EU membership have not yet materialized, on Feb. 3 the EU hailed Ukraine’s “considerable efforts” in recent months toward a potential membership.