VILNIUS – Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda said on Thursday that he hopes that the European Union in December will open negotiations with Kyiv on Ukraine's accession to the bloc.
According to the Lithuanian leader, positive conclusions from the European Commission on Ukraine's reforms could give impetus to this.
"We will certainly make every effort – Lithuania and other states strongly supporting Ukraine – so that we do not waste time and make a decision as early as in December on the start of negotiations with Ukraine," Nauseda said in a video comment from Granada, where he is taking part in the European Political Community summit.
The president said it is crucial that Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova carry out the remaining recommended reforms by December.
"There is not much time, but the European Commission will give a little more time if needed, but the most important thing is that we have a decision by December," said Nauseda.
"And if the European Commission's decision is positive, we will have very strong arguments in our hands to demand the start of accession negotiations," he added.
Ukraine was granted EU candidate status a year ago and hopes to start formal negotiations this year.