Andrius Kubilius. Opening Statement in the Euronest Parliamentary Assembly

Opening Statement in the Euronest Parliamentary Assembly in Chisinau,  20 February, 2023

Andrius Kubilius

Member of the European Parliament,

Co-President of Euronest PA

Congratulations to  all the members of Euronest Parliamentary Assembly and thanks to our hosts from Moldova. This is unique session, since it’s the  first session of Euronest,  held  during the war.

The war brings tectonic changes and geopolitical earthquakes in the whole EaP region and the whole European continent.

The first question, which we need to answer – why Putin started the war?

Somebody is calling that this is a traditional neoimperial or colonial war.

I would stress, that  this is the war of collapsing autocracy against inevitable spread of democracy to the eastern part of European continent. I would like to call it “Kremlin regime survival war”.

Kremlin waged the war not to allow democracy to spread into Russia. For Kremlin regime to survive in Russia the biggest threat is success of democratic Ukraine and other EaP countries, because that can inspire Russian people to demand the same development in Russia.

Ukraine success (and of  other EaP countries) can be built in the same way as success of Central Europe was created in 1990-ies through integration towards EU.  This is the only way how the success of countries in post Soviet area can be created. For Putin regime Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia  integration towards EU is the biggest danger for  survival of his regime.  That is the reason why he started the war against Ukraine success.

Russia will lose this war. With the Western assistance, they will be defeated in Ukraine.  It’s needed not only for Ukraine, it’s needed for the whole democratic world, and especially for democratic Europe. And such a defeat will bring collapse of autocracy in Russia, and it will open the doors for transformation back to democracy in Russia.

It’s a crucially important historical moment, which will change the whole geopolitical landscape of European continent. We, my generation, we have seen how Berlin Wall collapsed, now we are coming to the moment of the same historical significance when Kremlin wall of authoritarian, aggressive regime will collapse.

And that historical change depends exceptionally on Ukraine.

Because transformation of Russia will happen, first of all,  if Russian people will get rid of the dream to restore Empire. In order to achieve that, there are three most important things which we all together need to realize: 1) Russia military defeat in Ukraine; 2) international tribunal for Putin; and 3) NATO membership for Ukraine: Russians need to understand that Ukraine is gone from their sphere of influence.

From another side, for such transformation to happen Russian people need to believe that they can have normal life in Russia itself. And for that to happen, Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia   integration towards EU will play most important strategic role, because that is how Ukraine  and  other EaP countries success will be created and how example and inspiration for Russian people will created.

Transformation of Russia is the only way for sustainable peace to be created on European continent. That is why European integration is the only way towards sustainable peace, and that is why integration of EaP countries towards EU is needed not only for the countries of EaP themselves, but strategically is very much needed also for EU itself. That is also what on  EU side  we still need to understand properly. And that is why Eastern Partnership policy is one of the most important geopolitical policies of EU, and   why Euronest PA is such an important event.

Also it is so crucially important that we have this Assembly here in Chisniau. Not just because  we have session in the neighborhood of Ukraine, but mostly because Moldova brings a clear and very important evidence that if the people in EaP region has a possibility to make a free choice, they are choosing European direction. Despite all the Kremlin efforts to resist such a choice with all Kremlin hybrid influence weapons. I would like to congratulate President Maja Sandu and all the leadership of Moldova for a great job bringing Moldova on European road.

Moldova brings clear evidence what would be the choice of Belarus people if they would have possibility to make a free choice, which Lukashenko have stolen from them. The same with Russian people and that is why Kremlin dreams how to destroy such a choice of Moldova people. But they will not succeed.

Autocracy in Russia will loose: both military in Ukraine and geopolitically against European integration of EaP countries.

For that to happen there is a need of consolidated political will on EU side and the whole Western world side. We need to deliver weapons to Ukraine and we need to deliver integration, with an ambitious integration agenda for Trio countries and with accession negotiations for Ukraine and Moldova to be started during this year.

With “military Ramstein” we, the West,  have shown the way how to consolidate our political will in order to deliver weapons. In order to deliver integration, we need to create “Integration Ramstein” .

We need to deliver integration in such a way, that EaP countries, first of all Moldova and Ukraine, and I hope Georgia, would become members of EU before 2029 and would participate in regular elections towards European Parliament.

This is the way to sustainable peace on all the European continent. Collapse of Kremlin walls will remove the most important destabilizing factor, factor of aggression and oppression  for all the EaP region, not only for Ukraine and Moldova, but also for Belarus, and  for the whole South Caucasus.

But all the changes in EaP region, all the geopolitical changes on European continent starts with Ukraine victory.

That is why Long live Moldova and Slava Ukrainy!


Statement on the rule of law situation in Georgia

Georgia, an EU Associated country, has committed itself to uphold European values and principles, such as democracy, human rights and rule of law. The Georgian people, who are strong supporters of Georgia’s European aspirations, and Georgia’s European partners are expecting the Government and the ruling party to fully implement and adhere to these principles and standards.

In young European democracies, still struggling with post-totalitarian post-soviet habits, such examples as in the Yanukovych-time Ukraine, show, that an arrest and imprisonment of a leader of political opposition, former President or Prime Minister in such European country is immediately sending a warning signal to the world that democracy and rule of law in a given country may be deteriorating.

The fact, that in Georgia the leader of the opposition and former President is in jail, raises the question about political nature of the persecution. Public statements by the Prime Minister Garibashvili only confirm political motives behind the cases against Mr Saakashvili and are totally unacceptable in a European-type justice system and undermine the people’s choice for a European path of Georgia.

Georgia’s European future is at stake. The Government and the ruling party the Georgian Dream at this point bear primary responsibility for this situation and its resolution. They stand before a choice – to keep mitigating negative consequences, fuelling polarisation and mistrust internally and internationally as long as Mr Saakashvili stays in jail, or to return their focus on efforts to uphold the rule of law and European-type justice standards crucial to Georgia’s European aspirations.

The case of Mr Saakashvili has been submitted to theEuropean Court of Human Rights. This is the way to bring European justice to this crucially important for the future of Georgia case and the EU will be closely watching its deliberations and act upon its conclusions. While the ECHR is considering the case, Mr Saakashvili should be released from prison.

Members of the European Parliament:

Andrius KUBILIUS, Co-President of Euronest PA

Rasa JUKNEVIČIENĖ, Vice-Chair of the Delegation forRelations with South Caucasus (DSCA)





Statement on 2 October 2021 local elections in Georgia

We concur with the independent international observers’ assessment that the 2 October 2021 local elections in Georgia were technically well-administered, but the environment was marred with widespread and consistent allegations of intimidation, vote-buying, pressure on candidates and voters and an unlevel playing field. We share ODIHR concerns about the polarized media landscape, the significant imbalance of resources and insufficient oversight of campaign finances, the under-representation of women in the campaign, reports of misuse of administrative resources, and pressure against journalists. In addition to imbalance in resources favouring the ruling party, especially concerning is the ongoing polarisation of political field, affecting also the society. We agree with the U.S. Embassy Statement, that there is a dangerous risk that these and other recurring elections violations are becoming accepted as inevitable. Georgian voters deserve a higher standard of integrity in their election process. The important shortcomings identified by the independent observers must be corrected before the second round of the elections to ensure free and fair electoral process.

We expect the legal case of former President M. Saakashvili will be investigated in Georgia according to the principles of European justice system. Unfortunately, we need to note with concern Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili’s recent public threat to Mr Saakashvili on additional charges to be brought, if he does not “behave”. This shows that the case against MrSaakashvili is in fact political, which is deplorable and incompatible with the status of the EU Associated country. Itis a clear evidence that Georgian Dream leadership is yet again not able to overcome a temptation to politicize justice, which is not compatible with the rule of law principles and with European type justice principles. In any EU country such statement coming from a government official would result in his immediate resignation. Personal attacks by Prime Minister and leaders of the ruling Georgian Dream party against leaders of opposition parties and against achievements of “Rose Revolution” are simply disgusting. In mature European democracies, which are based on mutual trust and respect, onewould not see Government and ruling party leaders behaving in such way.

Maturity of democracy and European type of rule of law system are the preconditions for European integration. Georgian Dream again and again are failing to prove that they are able to fulfill those conditions.

We call on all Georgian political forces to start building bridges enabling normal democratic political dialogue, return to the pro-European reform track and focus on achieving very much needed progress in country’s development for the benefit of the Georgian people. It is important that Georgia does not waste results already achieved. On our part, we are ready to continue supporting Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic ambitions, but we stress that success on this path can come only with a joint and consistent effort of the ruling party and the opposition and all pro-European political forces working together to implement strong wish of the people to see Georgia in the EU.

Andrius KUBILIUS, MEP (EPP, Lithuania), Co-President of the Euronest PA

Rasa JUKNEVIČIENĖ, MEP (EPP, Lithuania),  Vice-Chair of the Delegation for Relations with South Caucasus (DSCA)


Georgian strategic unity is key to move forward with ambition of Euro-Atlantic integration

By Andrius Kubilius, MEP, Chair of the European Parliament’s Delegation to the Euronest Parliamentary Assembly

Since the Rose Revolution, Georgia is showing a clear ambition of Euro-Atlantic integration. Georgia’s success of keeping-up with this direction is very important not only for Georgia itself, but also for the whole South Caucasus region. Given the geopolitical challenges in the region, developments in Georgia will have wide-ranging consequences for the Eastern Partnership countries, Russia, and, consequently, for the whole Europe.

Recent developments linked with stepping-up of NATO integration programmes and practical support for Georgia, as well as with Georgia’s ambition by 2024 to submit a formal application for the EU membership, are very much encouraging, especially, in the context of geopolitical situation around the South Caucasus region.

It goes without saying, that national political consensus is a key factor for Georgia in the next decade to move forward with an ambitious EU and NATO membership agenda and to address external geopolitical challenges, which are mainly coming from Russia.

In this context, Georgia’s political establishment, including all major political forces, must come to a joint agreement to have a national consensus on Georgia’s strategic objectives of Euro-Atlantic integration endorsed by a fully functioning Parliament. This agreement can become a milestone in a form of national enhanced EU and NATO integration strategy, which among other things may include a road map of electoral and governance reforms in the context of accession preparations. In this spirit, Georgia’s ambition by 2024 to apply for the EU membership is a positive step, which will demand consolidated national political will.

We trust in maturity of political leadership on both sides of the aisle. This is a crucial moment in the history of democratic Georgia, for which the price of political instability can be very high and have long-term effects on Georgian future.