The statement made by Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the President of Ukraine, on 20 June 2022.
Good health to you, fellow Ukrainians!
Step by step, we are going through a crucial week and we are doing everything every day so that no one has any doubts that Ukraine deserves the candidacy. We prove every day that we are already part of a united European, I would even say, value space.
Now the deputies of the Verkhovna Rada have already left, and I am here. And you know, I’d like to thank them today. We often criticize them, but today they did a very good job.
I am grateful to all our people’s deputies who supported our European integration. I would like to note the vote in favor of the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence. This Convention is often called the Istanbul Convention – according to the place of signature. It has been “undermined” in Ukraine for decades. But its main content is simple – it is the obligation to protect against violence and various forms of discrimination.
I would also like to thank the deputies who supported the Law on Waste Management. This is an important environmental document. We have been struggling for it for three years. The law has been rejected several times due to oligarchic influence, and now it has been passed. Finally. Thank you.
The Anticorruption strategy was approved today. This is also very important. I hope that the Rada will continue to work with the same significant results.
I delivered four addresses today. The first was to the participants of the Three Seas Initiative Summit. It is a powerful regional association in Europe. 12 states between the Baltic, the Adriatic and the Black Sea. Before addressing, I spoke with President Duda. We coordinated our positions with Andrzej.
And at the summit it was decided that Ukraine acquires a status that will allow it to become a full member of the Three Seas Initiative. For us, these are significant economic opportunities, modernization of transport, communications and networks. This is another line of close cooperation between Ukraine and the EU states.
By the way, we have good news from our border with Poland. In the framework of the Open Border project, the capacity of the Krakovets’-Korczowa checkpoint has been increased by 50 percent. This will significantly increase the export-import flow across the border. Modernization awaits other checkpoints on the borders with the European Union. And it is tangible, and not only for us. Allows doing global things. Fighting the food crisis provoked by Russia’s blockade of ports.
I spoke about it in an address to the leaders of the African Union. I stressed that this crisis is artificial – it would not exist if it was not for the Russian war against us. I also stressed that we can ensure the supply of agricultural products in the amount that will definitely guarantee the security of Africa, the security of Asia.
In general, we are expanding the capabilities of our state. Like all powerful European countries, we need our own policies towards Africa, Latin America, South-East Asia and other parts of the world that were previously left out of proper attention of Ukraine’s foreign policy. We are working on the agency of Ukraine.
I also addressed the participants of the Global Policy Forum in Italy. Very influential meeting. I talked about how to bring all Ukrainian migrants home.
Today I met with Ben Stiller, a well-known actor and UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador who is engaged in providing assistance to displaced persons and refugees. I am grateful to Ben for his constant attention to the needs of Ukrainians.
I met with President of the General Confederation of Italian Industry Carlo Bonomi. We talked about the ties between Ukrainian and Italian business. I am grateful for the opening of the Confederation’s office in Kyiv.
And the shortest, but very important address was made to the participants of the International Festival of Creativity in Cannes – the largest such event in the world. The Cannes Lions is a special audience. These are people who know how to control attention and who are very much needed in Ukraine right now. The longer the war lasts, the harder it is to compete for the attention of hundreds of millions of people in different countries. But I will do everything possible so that attention to Ukraine does not fade. I called on the most creative people in the world to be our allies in this. And I know that the response in Cannes was very positive.
The next days of the week will also be busy. We are moving towards the main decision of the European Council, which will be adopted on Friday.
As I predicted, Russia is very nervous about our activity. Again shelling of Kharkiv, Odesa, again attempts of brutal offensive actions in Donbas. This is an evil that can only be appeased on the battlefield. We are defending Lysychansk and Severodonetsk. This whole region is the most difficult, there are the hardest battles. But our strong boys and girls are there. The occupiers receive responses to their actions against us. I am grateful to the army and intelligence that provide it.
In the evening I signed another decree on awarding our defenders. 220 combatants were awarded state awards. 27 of them posthumously.
Eternal memory to all who gave their lives for Ukraine!
Eternal glory to all who defend our state!
Glory to you!
Glory to Ukraine!