Costa goes to Kiev to sign agreement on financial support for Ukraine

After a videoconference meeting with his Ukrainian counterpart, the prime minister announced that he will travel to Kiev to meet Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky with the aim of signing an agreement on financial support for Ukraine. António Costa did not reveal the financial slice that Portugal will make available, admitting that it cannot be as high as that of other countries, but that in the coming weeks, a “reinforcement” of the various support that Ukraine needs, from a financial point of view, will be worked on. , military and humanitarian.

In the coming weeks there will be “opportunity to discuss and work on strengthening this support to respond to immediate needs, both in military and financial matters. We will also discuss Ukraine’s European perspective, whether the strengthening of sanctions on Russia”, said António Costa at a press conference. Still on the table will be a way to get around the blockade on Ukrainian exports, a logistical operation that will have to start soon, he said.

Although the date for the visit to Kiev was closed, António Costa sent the announcement to a later date, as he did not mention the date on which the Portuguese embassy will return to the Ukrainian capital.

After the meeting, Costa said he “rejoices” with Ukraine’s “European option”, but recalls that the processes of accession to the European Union are long, so what is necessary is to act immediately. One of the actions involves the embargo on Russian energy. Asked if Portugal cannot be “more assertive” in defending the total embargo on Russian gas, Costa argued that although Portugal has an easier position in this regard, as it does not depend on Russia for energy, “there are other partners who are not in the same situation” . “It can’t be a popularity contest with Ukraine,” he said. “The worst we could do to Ukraine was to create divisions”he insisted.

At the press conference, the prime minister announced that a short-term solution is being created that involves the use of the Port of Sines, so that there is a way to reach European Union countries dependent on Russia. “We are doing what matters: working so that sanctions can be applied, reaching those who should reach and not harming those who should not be harmed”, he said. This alternative solution will be installed while the interconnection of the Iberian Peninsula is not concluded, which, he said, allowed Portugal and Spain to fill 30% of the dependence of EU countries on Russia.

No to the “illegalization” of the PCP

With his former partner under fire for the positions he has taken on Ukraine, António Costa refused that Portugal should live in a “witch hunt climate” and that despite disagreeing, “we have to respect” what the different parties defend. “From political divergence in relation to the PCP, moving to the illegalization of the PCP is something inconceivable in a democratic state”, he said. “The PCP has a position diametrically opposite to ours. Yes, it is part of democracy. We have to respect it”, he stressed, in response to the association of Ukrainians in Portugal, which calls for the outlawing of the Communist Party.

Source: Expresso by

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