Ukrainian PM says EU-Ukraine summit to take place in Kyiv

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Ukraine’s prime minister said a Ukraine-European Union summit will take place in Kyiv on Friday, as the war-torn country battles to repel the Russian invasion.

“The Ukraine-EU summit will be held in Kyiv on February 3,” Prime Minister Denys Shmygal told a government meeting on Tuesday, calling the event “extremely important” for Kyiv’s bid to join the European bloc.

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“The fact that this summit will be held in Kyiv is a powerful signal to both partners and enemies.”

No details were provided on who would be attending on the European Union side.

Russian President Vladimir Putin sent troops to Ukraine on February 24 last year, and his forces have repeatedly targeted civilian infrastructure including in the capital Kyiv.

Shmygal said that the fact that the high-profile summit will take place in war-time Kyiv is meant to demonstrate to Russia that its efforts to sow discord among Kyiv’s Western allies and prevent Ukraine from joining the EU have been futile.

The Ukrainian prime minister said that another key event will take place on Thursday, when consultations between the government of Ukraine and the European Commission will take place “for the first time in our history.”

Ukraine gained EU candidacy status in June last year.

EU countries have staunchly supported Ukraine since Moscow invaded in February, by hitting Russia with waves of economic penalties and sending weapons to Kyiv.

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