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!


EU Association Agreement with the Republic of Moldova (debate)

Mr President, today, many people around the world want to defeat Putin. The people of Moldova have already won against Putin by voting for Maia Sandu and her team. Putin openly supported the Kremlin candidate and lost.

The EU must give clear hope to the Moldovan people, who have voted for the European way and rejected corrupt politicians. Moldova took in refugees from Ukraine and clearly sided with the democratic states, despite the Kremlin threatening Moldova in the same way as it is threatening Ukraine.

The people of Moldova deserve to be part of the European family, and the Council should send a clear signal. Moldovans need a European perspective. If we do not seize this opportunity, there may not be another one soon.

The EU has the chance to become a real geopolitical actor. A firm hand extended to Moldova would be a step towards it.


EU will not tolerate being the scapegoat for the Moldovan government’s failures

The Chair of the European Parliament’s Delegation to the EU-Moldova Parliamentary Association Committee Mr Siegfried Muresan, MEP, and

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

As the Covid-19 crisis continues to affect thousands of people and ravage the global economy, the EU remains alert to the situation in its neighbouring regions, in particular in the Eastern Partnership countries.

We have observed with great concern the recent developments in the Republic of Moldova. Despite the EU being the biggest aid supporter to Moldova, the continuous propaganda and disinformation campaigns paint a distorted and unrealistic picture. President Dodon’s constant attacks and a round of despising and denigrating messages against the EU on public television and in the media does not help the Moldovans, nor improve the EU-Moldova’s relations.

Given the continuous discrediting of the EU, it is important to set the record straight. As the Chair of the European Parliament’s EU-Moldova delegation and as Chair of the European Parliament’s delegation to the Euronest Parliamentary Assembly, it is our duty to communicate the truth about the EU’s and international partners assistance amounting up to 0.5 billion euros to the Moldovan citizens.

In this crisis, the Moldovan people and businesses need immediate relief driven by genuine intentions, not electoral planning.

The EU offered non-reimbursable funds amounting to €87 million for immediate needs. This includes emergency health response under ongoing projects that delivered protective equipment and ventilators and, for the recovery, grants to develop business activities or renovation of hospitals. The EU’s latest activities include material supply to Cahul, Ungheni, to MD Border Police and to medical institutions on both banks of the Nistru.

In this crisis, Moldova’s doctors, nurses and the healthcare sector need protective equipment and support, instead of the authorities attempts at silencing their complaints or controlling public data to distort the real numbers or the situation. 

In this context, the EU in cooperation with the World Health Organisation offered the region the immediate and non-repayable amount of €30 million to provide medical material depending on their needs.

In this crisis, the Moldovan people want a recovery plan and reassurance for their future.

The EU is aware that agriculture, healthcare, SMEs, hospitality and many more sectors are in a dire situation. The EU is to provide an additional macro financial assistance (MFA) of €100 million helping Moldova to mitigate the effects of COVID-19 crisis and continue reforms necessary to sustain the economic recovery. This goes on top of the ongoing MFA of €70 million to be disbursed under the second and third instalments, before July 2020, in line with agreed reform roadmap. In this context, the IMF is also extending €220 million of emergency support to Moldova to mitigate the economic effects of the COVID-19 crisis.

The EU aid does not aim at covering the governing political purposes, but to help the Moldovans affected by the Covid-19 crisis. That is why, part of the EU aid goes directly to citizens through existing projects, not in to the government’s coffers. Like this, no president or public figure can attribute the EU’s help to himself.

The EU’s MFA aid of €70 million and an additional €100 million is offered to the Moldovan government only after it complies with strict conditionality by implementing important reforms beneficial for all Moldova. Any delay in receiving this support is the responsibility of the current authorities for not doing their homework to get the assistance to the people of Moldova. The authorities know very well the type of reforms needed to be implemented in accordance with the Memorandum of Understanding they signed with the EU.

We will not tolerate the current government’s attempt to use the EU as a scapegoat for their unpreparedness and failure to deliver for their people.

While the EU aid is diminished and omitted, it is disheartening to see how the current authorities approve a dubious loan from the Russian Federation that serves their political interests while imposing further burdens on the citizens and the country’s budget. It is more worrying to observe the enormous pressure put on the judges of the Constitutional Court to endorse the Russian loan that benefits part of the political class and impoverishes the rest of the population.

The EU’s ambition and goal has always been to put the citizens first and we will continue to do so in the future.