The EU calls to stop “immediately” the attack on Ukraine

The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyenand the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Policy, Joseph Borrellhave done this Thursday a call to stop “immediately” the “unjustified” attack of Russia against Ukraine after the decision of the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, to start a military operation in the Donbas region, something that they have described as the “darkest” moments since the Second World War.

These are the darkest hours for Europe since the end of World War II.since a major nuclear power has attacked a neighboring country and is threatening any other state that may come to its rescue with retaliation,” Borrell denounced in an appearance without questions along with Von der Leyen.

Both have condemned Russia’s “barbaric attack” against Ukraine because “it is not only the major violation of the international orderbut a violation of the basic principles of human coexistence”. “It is costing many lives with unknown consequences before us”, the high representative stressed.

“Massive sanctions” for Russia

In addition, Von der Leyen has announced that the European Union will respond with more “massive” sanctions against Russian “strategic sectors”, since it will not allow Russia to “tear down the security architecture” on the continent.

“We are living through an unprecedented act of aggression against a sovereign state. The goal is not just Donbas, it is not just Ukraine, but the stability of the EU and the peace order, and we will make sure that Putin will pay for it“, has affirmed the president of the European Commission, who has added that “the Russian president will not be allowed to tear down the security architecture that has provided peace and stability to Europe during the last decades”

Regarding the sanctions, Borrell added that it will be the “most massive and harshest sanctions package we have ever adopted” and has warned the Russian president that if Russia does not back down it will be “subjected to unprecedented isolation”.

“With this packagewe will focus on strategic sectors of the Russian economy blocking their access to key technologies and markets. We will weaken Russia’s economic base and its capacity for modernization”, explained Von der Leyen. In addition, he pointed out that they will be restrictive measures “designed” against the “capacity” of the Kremlin “to finance the war” and in coordination with partners Westerners.

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“Political, military and financial” aid to Ukraine

In a subsequent appearance, the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, announced the EU has agreed to “give political, military and financial aid” to Ukraine. “They need our support more than ever,” she explained.

Michel has also made a appeal to Belarus so that “it is not part of this tragedy” and he recalled that in Europe they are “totally united” and “determined to work with NATO” so that Russia “is accountable”, as well as to “protect peace”.

In this regard, Von der Leyen explained that the EU had been preparing for “weeks” “for the worst”, and has also guaranteed aid to Ukraine.

Meetings and summits to address the situation

To discuss the sanctions against Russia, this Thursday afternoon there is an extraordinary summit of the president of the European CouncilCharlesMichel, with EU leaders in Brussels, which was convened before the attack on Ukraine.

In addition, the President of the European Parliament (EP), Roberta Metsola, will convene this Thursday a extraordinary plenary session of the European Parliament for next Tuesday in which the invasion of Ukraine by Russia will be discussed, according to several parliamentary sources.

On the other hand, NATO leaders will meet this emergency Friday to prepare the response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, allied sources have reported.

condemnation of European leaders

Also almost all EU heads of state and government have strongly condemned Russia’s military operations in Ukraineand have demanded that Vladimir Putin cease all operations and withdraw troops from that territory, while holding Moscow responsible for “this act of aggression and all the destruction and loss of life it will cause.”

“Russia’s military attack on Ukraine – an independent and sovereign state – is a flagrant violation of international law and of the fundamental principles on which the rules-based international order is based,” the EU countries said in a joint statement hours before their emergency meeting in Brussels, scheduled for 8:00 p.m. this Thursday.

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The Twenty-seven have accused Russia of unilaterally opting for “a serious and premeditated escalation” of a security crisis provoked by Moscow itself and have reaffirmed that its response to the invasion will include “both sectoral and individual restrictive measures fully coordinated with our transatlantic and related partners”.

For his part, French President Emmanuel Macron has claimed that the Russian attack “changes the history of Europe” and has warned that “it will have lasting consequences”. In addition, he has recalled that at the meetings of the G7 (the richest countries in the world), of European leaders and at the NATO summit, sanctions will be adopted that “will be at the level of aggression.” He has also requested that Russia “is accountable to the UN Security Council.”

Macron claims that Russia’s attack on Ukraine “changes the history of Europe” and “will have lasting consequences”

The German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, has accused Putin of “having started this war”, and of being “flagrantly violating international law”. And he has warned you that he will be given “a decided answer.” “Today we are going to approve more, stricter sanctions and we are going to apply them with determination. Russian leaders will be penalized for these actions to show Putin that he has made a serious mistake,” Scholz stressed in an appearance.

Scholz has also stated that Putin “wants to go back to the 19th century, when the big nations decided for the small ones.” “We cannot go back to the Cold War, nor to the time of 1989,” he added.

In turn, the President of the Spanish Government, Pedro Sánchez, has condemned the Russian aggression against Ukraine. In a message on Twitter, Sánchez has also expressed Spain’s solidarity “with the Government and the Ukrainian people.” In addition, he has urgently convened the National Security Council in Zarzuela.

Also the British Prime Minister, Boris Johnsonhas stated thatl UK “won’t look the other way” because it has considered that “the attack on Ukraine is an attack on democracy throughout the world”. In a televised address to the nation on Ukraine, Johnson also announced new sanctions to hit the Russian economy and lamented “dependence on Russian gas.”

Just Hungary has avoided explicitly condemning Russia’s attack on Ukraine, although the Hungarian Foreign Minister, Péter Szijjártó, has recognized that “war is the worst possible scenario”. He has also shown his support for Ukraine’s sovereignty. Already this Wednesday the Hungarian Prime Minister, Viktor Orbán, assured that Hungary must stay out of the armed conflict.

Ukraine’s neighboring countries appeal to NATO Article 4

Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia have invoked NATO Article 4, which provides for immediate consultations between the allies, while warning against the “predictable” campaign of disinformation and Russian cyberattacks. The three former Soviet republics have spoken in similar communiqués.

As well Slovakiawhich shares a 97-kilometre border with Ukraine, will ask this Thursday at the urgent meeting of the North Atlantic Council open consultations on article 4 of the treaty, which is applied when any of the Alliance countries feels threatened. “At today’s NATO meeting we are going to ask the alliance to launch the Article 4 consultation. The situation demands it,” said Foreign Minister Ivan Korcok.

For his part, the current president of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE)the Polish Foreign Minister, Zbigniew Rau, and the organization’s Secretary General, Helga Schmid, have condemned Russia for its attack on Ukraine and have called for an immediate cessation of hostilities. The OSCE, born in the Cold War to promote dialogue between blocs, has 57 member states, including Russia, Ukraine, the US and all of the EU.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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