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'Russia will capitalise on any doubt shown in Ukraine conflict' - Zelenskyy

Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy
Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy Copyright Carl Court, Pool via AP
Copyright Carl Court, Pool via AP
By Euronews
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The Ukrainian president attempted to rally continued support for his country in its war with the Kremlin.

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Moscow will take advantage of any doubts or divisions shown by the collective West when it comes to the conflict in Ukraine, according to the country's president.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy was speaking at the second meeting of the pan-continental European Political Community (EPC) in Moldova, which aims to boost the continent's response to Kremlin aggression.

Although nothing concrete came out of the meeting, it is a great opportunity for rare encounters between European leaders, as well as a chance for the Ukrainian president to garner support.

"Every doubt we show here in Europe is a trench that Russia will definitely try to occupy," Zelenskyy said on Thursday.

"Whether these doubts are about vital security steps or doubts about our unity, or maybe about our ability to meet the challenges of our time, every doubt brings more insecurity."

The main topic of the discussion was how to give security guarantees to Ukraine, with Zelenskyy openly pushing for NATO membership.

But the path to joining will not be easy, particularly since some alliance members do not support the idea.

It is also a major red line for the Kremlin and could be a valuable card to play during any eventual peace negotiations.

During the summit, Kaja Kallas, the Prime Minister of Estonia, made it clear that support for Ukraine is, for now, unwaivering.

"I think this is important to give Ukrainians hope and also show Russia that we are behind Ukraine and and Ukraine's place is in NATO," she said.

"Of course, everybody understands that this can't happen while the war is going on, but to have a very clear signal that Ukraine belongs to NATO and we are behind Ukraine is important".

The choice of holding the summit in Moldova was also seen as a message to the Kremlin. 

It was held just 20 kilometres away from the border and also follows the country receiving EU candidate status in June last year at the same time as Ukraine.

The next step now, is to try to shape a consensus around what exactly to offer to Ukraine within the next six weeks when NATO leaders will meet in Vilnius, Lithuania.

While France has made some steps in terms of wording calling for Ukraine to be granted a clear path to membership, this is not the case for countries like Germany, which is still cautious to provide any concrete timetable.

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