Ukraine Won't Be Priority for New EU Parliament - Rikard Jozwiak
9 July, 2019

With the new European politicians assuming seats, Ukraine is losing its friends in the face of Jean-Claude Juncker, Federica Mogherini, and the Polish-born Donald Tusk, argues Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Brussels correspondent Rikard Jozwiak.

"They (the outgoing European politicians -ed.) can promise whatever they want but it really doesn't matter because there's a new council, new commission coming very soon. Different people who might not care too much about Ukraine," Jozwiak told Hromadske during the E.U.-Ukraine summit held in Kyiv, Ukraine on July 8. 

The summit saw politicians like Juncker, Tusk, as well as the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, in attendance.

Jozwiak highlighted that most of the new European politicians hail from Western Europe, which is "not necessarily a bad thing," but there aren't any people with specific know-how knowledge about Ukraine.

"I'm fearing that for the next few years, the relationship between Brussels and Kyiv will be a bit more difficult," Jozwiak said.

The journalist, however, expressed high expectations about Ursula von der Leyen, the President-designate of the European Commission who will replace Juncker on November 1 this year.

"She used to be a defense minister so she knows about the threat from Russia," he said.

Speaking about Ukraine's new President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Jozwiak described him as "tabula rasa."

"When he came to Brussels, it was a bit of a tabula rasa. They knew that he didn't really know too much. In fact, they filled him in. He was a good student. They're really feeling each other a bit."

Asked whether Ukraine can expect the release of the 24 Ukrainian sailors, Jozwiak said that E.U. politicians are good at expressing their concern, but "as always, statements will just remain statements."

READ MORE: Will the EU Elections Change Anything in Ukraine?​

/Interview by Nataliya Gumenyuk

/Text by Maria Romanenko