The statement made by Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the President of Ukraine, on 23 June 2022.
Good evening, great people of our state!
Today was marked by a discussion of the historic decision of the EU Summit – granting Ukraine candidate status.
Since this morning and until this moment, there is a dialogue on television, radio, on the Internet about what it means, what conditions Ukraine has to fulfill, how difficult it will be to fulfill and how many years it will take…
And I want to say the following on this day. Let’s rejoice at least a little. In a quiet, modest way, silently, but rejoice. For ourselves, for our beloved state. Let’s feel the moment and the taste of this moment.
Imagine conquering Everest. You reached the penultimate point. You didn’t look around, didn’t even take a breath and talk about the further way to the top. How difficult it will be to overcome the last 1848 meters. Instantly we forgot and devalued our own success.
Maybe we should first recall that we have already covered 7,000 meters?! Let’s not be ashamed to talk about our achievements. Let’s not be a nation with a short memory and inferiority complex.
We say: Ukraine has been granted EU candidate status. Let’s say: Ukraine has gained EU candidate status. Did it fall from the sky? Haven’t we endured and done a lot?
Today we focus on seven EU requirements. Yes. It’s true. But does it scare us? No. Because before that we successfully fulfilled hundreds. Let’s not forget about it. Not for bragging, but for the belief that we will definitely overcome this path. We have covered 7,000 meters, so we will not stop – we will reach our Everest.
Let’s talk at least for a moment not about what awaits us, but about what we managed to do. Because, forgetting about it, we underestimate the significance of this step.
There were times when we couldn’t take tickets in the evening and fly to Europe in the morning. We stood in line. Documents, visas, etc. Remember? A pile of papers that we carried in the file, which were required by all government agencies with officials who did not report to us and did not submit electronic declarations. High-ranking officials, for the control of which there was neither a special body nor a special court. Deputies with immunity. President who could not be impeached. Land that could not just be bought.
Sounds wild? It seems it wasn’t with us, doesn’t it? It was. And not so long ago. But we changed everything.
Privatization. Land reform. Open-list voting. Decentralization. NACP, Anticorruption Court, administrative services centers, public services online. Diia. Split. Unbundling. Concession. Common aviation space. Industrial visa-free regime. Deoligarchization.
Much has been done. Exactly done! Let’s not forget that. Let’s be proud of ourselves. Respect ourselves.
And we repelled the Russians. And we will win. Because when we respect ourselves we will be respected by others.
Do not rejoice at a slap in the face of Moscow, but be proud of applause for Ukraine. And that’s why I want to see us in one family. Let it inspire you.
We deserved it. Realized it. Smile, please. And may God give us all a quiet night.
Well, tomorrow is the battle again. With new strength. With new wings.
Glory to Ukraine!