Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko and the European Union Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship, Dimitris Avramopoulos discussed a broad range of issues at their meeting on Thursday evening.
Avramopoulos informed Poroshenko about the status of the European Commission’s legislative proposal to scrap visa requirements for Ukrainians, currently under consideration of the EU institutions, the Ukrainian president’s press office said.
The pair has agreed to coordinate Ukrainian and EC efforts to ensure a swift favorable outcome on the matter. “We must join our efforts to speed up introduction of visa-free travel for Ukrainian citizens,” the president said.
Avramopoulos welcomed the appointment of Yuriy Lutsenko as Ukraine’s new Prosecutor General and expressed hope that the move will intensify the reform of the prosecution system and the fight against corruption.
The pair stressed the need to speed up introduction of the EU-Ukraine association agreement.
Poroshenko also informed the EU commissioner about the situation in Donbas and Ukraine’s efforts to implement the Minsk agreements, including the results of the latest meeting of the Normandy Quartet foreign ministers in Berlin.
“It was noted once again that the EU sanctions against the Russian Federation will remain in place until Moscow fully implements the Minsk Agreements and restored the territorial integrity of Ukraine, including over Crimea,” the press office said.
Poroshenko also pointed to what he described as a significant deterioration of the situation around Crimean Tatars’ rights in Crimea.
“The situation with the rights of the Ukrainians, including the Crimean Tatars, is catastrophic,” said the president. He added that in this situation the EU should not only continue but significantly toughen its sanctions against Russia.