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Von de Leyen: "Hard work" needed for Ukraine to join EU

BRUSSELS, July 1 (KUNA) -- President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen on Friday said that Ukraine now has a clear European perspective and it is candidate to join the European Union.
"Something that seemed almost unimaginable just five months ago. So today is first and foremost a moment to celebrate this historic milestone," she told the Ukrainian parliament in a speech via video link.
"The next steps are within your reach. But they will require hard work, determination and above all unity of purpose," she stressed.
"There's a long road ahead for Ukraine but Europe will be at your side every step of the way. For every reform, for as long as it takes," said the head of the EU's executive body.
Leaders of the 27-member EU on June 23 granted Ukraine and Moldova the EU candidate status and also set conditions that need to be met before membership talks could start. (end) nk.gb