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Zelenskiy makes plea for EU membership

Ukraine is fighting for the security of the whole of Europe and should be a full member of the European Union, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has told Swedish lawmakers.

“We are not fighting just for the people of Ukraine, but for Europe’s security and we have shown that we deserve to be a fully fledged member of the EU,” Zelenskiy said in a video address to parliament on Thursday.

“It’s time to go ahead with that decision and I am convinced you are going to support us even in that.”

Millions of Ukrainians have fled the country in the month since Russia launched its invasion, which Moscow calls a “special military operation” to “denazify” its neighbour.

Western allies have imposed sweeping sanctions against Russia and provided weapons and aid worth billions of dollars for Ukraine’s defence.

NATO, the G7 and the EU will all hold summits on Thursday with further measures directed against Russia expected to be agreed.

Zelenskiy, who will address NATO and EU leaders by video-conference, called for more sanctions and asked for Swedish help to rebuild Ukraine when the war is over.

“I want Swedish companies, Swedish architects, the Swedish state and the Swedish people to take part in that,” he said through a translator.

“We will rebuild for the sake of the people … for the sake of Europe.”

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