Europe Day is celebrated in Ukraine: the history of the holiday and our path to the EU

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Europe Day is celebrated in Ukraine: the history of the holiday and our path to the EU

Europe Day is celebrated in Ukraine/Channel 24 Collage

Europe Day is celebrated every year on the third Saturday of May in Ukraine. This year the holiday fell on May 21.

This is already the 20th Europe Day, which Ukraine will celebrate. The holiday was founded back in 2003, as Ukraine took a strategic course towards rapprochement with the European Union and further entry into it. Read more about the history of this day and the path of our state to the EU.

In Europe, this holiday is celebrated on May 9th. In 1950, French Foreign Minister Robert Schuman issued a call for the unification of post-war European states for their development and prosperity in the future. This was the impetus for the creation of the EU.

By the way, on April 18, 2022, the Verkhovna Rada also proposed to postpone the holiday to May 9. If the relevant bill is supported, next year we will celebrate Europe Day together with the EU.

Celebration of Europe Day in Ukraine

Before the war, festive events were held in the central squares of Kyiv, Kharkov, Odessa, Lvov. For example, in Kyiv they built a “European town”, held presentations about the history and culture of European countries, concerts.

Europe Day is celebrated in Ukraine: the history of the holiday and our way to the EU

Europe Day celebration earlier/Photo “Evening Kyiv”

However, now, during martial law, celebrations will not be held due to the threat of missile attacks. An entertainment program will be arranged on Starokievskaya Hill, but we will fully celebrate the holiday after the victory. Despite this, Ukrainians remember the holiday in social networks, posting messages under the hashtag “Europe Day”.

They note that we are united not only by geography and colors of flags, but by common opinions, values ​​and future. Ukraine has always been, is and will be a part of Europe.

Ukraine's path to the EU

Ukraine chose the path of European integration a long time ago, but in 2013 the process of irreversibility began – the Revolution of Dignity. So, on November 28, 2013, at the 8th summit, they were supposed to sign an Association Agreement with the EU. However, on November 21, the Yanukovych government unexpectedly suspended preparations for the signing of the document. People took to the streets. They had to fight their right to choose with protests, for which the Heavenly Hundred perished.

  • However, after the change of power in Ukraine, official Kyiv again began an active rapprochement with the European Union.
  • We signed an association agreement, which was ratified by all EU countries.
  • Having abandoned its non-bloc status, Ukraine has fixed its course towards joining the EU and NATO in the Constitution. The European Union has become the main trading partner of Ukraine.

Europe Day is celebrated in Ukraine: the history of the holiday and our path to the EU

The Beginning of the Revolution of Dignity/Photo “Rubrika”

The status of a candidate for membership is not far off

After Russia's full-scale attack, the process of European integration of our country has accelerated significantly. Our European partners, in particular Lithuania and Poland, immediately declared that Ukraine deserved the status of a candidate for EU membership.

Already on February 28, a historic moment occurred – President Volodymyr Zelensky signed an application for EU membership, which in the same day sent to Brussels.

Europe Day is celebrated in Ukraine: the history of the holiday and our path to the EU

Zelensky signed an application for EU membership/Photo from the president's twitter

More Ukraine began to fill out a questionnaire – this is a questionnaire that is necessary to obtain the status of a candidate for EU membership. The first part was completed and handed over to Brussels in mid-April, and the second part was sent on May 9th. By the way, the answers to the second part of the questionnaire took about 4 thousand pages. The European Commission is already studying the document.

The European Council should consider Ukraine's application for EU membership in June 2022. The Office of the President hopes that then the state will be able to obtain the status of a candidate for membership, since most European countries support us. Actually, the decision of the European Council will become a kind of test and show whether all these words of support in recent months were just words.

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