Kyiv hosts EU summit amid Russian offensive
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A summit between the European Union and Ukraine is organized Friday in kyiv in the presence of the President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, the head of European diplomacy Josep Borrell and the President of the European Council Charles Michel. Follow live the latest developments on the war in Ukraine.
4 a.m.: Kyiv hosts summit with EU amid Russian offensive
Candidate for EU membership, Ukraine hosted a summit on Friday with European representatives, “strong symbol” according to the Commission of the support of the Twenty-Seven “in the face of the unjustified aggression” of Russia, which has recently regained ground in the East.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen arrived in kyiv on Thursday, accompanied by the head of European diplomacy Josep Borrell and around fifteen European commissioners. “Good to be back in Kyiv, my fourth time since the Russian invasion and this time with my team of stewards,” she tweeted. “We are here together to show that the EU stands consistently alongside Ukraine.”
Good to be back in Kyiv, my 4th time since the invasion of Russia.
This time, with my team of curators.
We are here together to show that the EU supports Ukraine more strongly than ever.
And to further deepen our support and cooperation. pic.twitter.com/zf8fvoNKnG
— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) February 2, 2023
The President of the European Council Charles Michel is also expected, for discussions which will address in particular the steps for Ukraine’s accession to the EU, a difficult process that kyiv intends to accelerate.
12:12 a.m.: Germany approves sending Leopard 1 tanks to Ukraine
The German government has approved the delivery to Ukraine of Leopard 1 tanks from industrial stocks, the Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported on Friday, adding that Berlin was discussing with Qatar the purchase of 15 Gepard tanks. Citing government sources, the newspaper says the shipment of the Leopard characters to Ukraine could be done as soon as the vehicles are operational.
The Rheinmetall and Flensburger Fahrzeugbau Gesellschaft (FFG) group wants to recondition dozens of Leopard 1 tanks in order to offer Kyiv to buy them, it is added.
According to the newspaper, several German representatives have accelerated discussions with the Qatari Ministry of Foreign Affairs on a possible purchase of 15 Gepard characters that Doha had procured ahead of the 2022 Football World Cup in order to secure its stadiums.
German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius said that “the Gepards have demonstrated their effectiveness in the war in Ukraine. If we could get more of them from our partners, it would definitely help the Ukrainians”, according to proposals reported by the newspaper.
With AFP and Reuters