Text adopted by Parliament, single reading  
2014/2965(RSP) - 15/01/2015  

The European Parliament adopted a resolution on the situation in Ukraine.

The text adopted in plenary was tabled by the EPP, S&D, ECR, ALDE, Greens/EFA groups and Valentinas MAZURONIS (EFDD, LT).

Parliament recalled that on 26 October 2014 Ukraine held parliamentary elections, which were conducted efficiently, in an orderly and peaceful manner.

It recalled that the so-called ‘presidential and parliamentary elections’ held in Donetsk and Luhansk on 2 November 2014 were in breach of Ukrainian law and the Minsk agreements.

It stated that the armed conflict in the eastern part of Ukraine has resulted in thousands of military and civilian casualties, with many more wounded and hundreds of thousands having fled their homes, most of them fleeing to Russia.

In parallel, Parliament expressed its full solidarity with Ukraine and its people. It reiterated, once again, its commitment to the independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity, inviolability of borders and European choice of Ukraine.

Russia’s expansionist policy: Members condemned the acts of terrorism and criminal behaviour of the separatists and other irregular forces in eastern Ukraine. They strongly condemned Russia’s aggressive and expansionist policy, which constitutes a threat to the unity and independence of Ukraine and poses a potential threat to the EU itself, including the illegal annexation of Crimea and waging an undeclared hybrid war against Ukraine.

According to the Parliament, these actions are in breach of international law and constitute a serious challenge to the European security situation. There is no justification for the use of military force in Europe in defence of so-called historical and security motives or for the protection of one’s so-called ‘compatriots living abroad’.

Parliament called on Russia to use its influence over the separatists to ensure they abide by the ceasefire, and to encourage the adoption of confidence-building measures that support the peace and reconciliation efforts.

Maintaining sanctions: Parliament called for the continuation of the current EU sanctions regime as long as Russia does not fully respect and, above all, deliver on its Minsk obligations. It urged the Commission to find ways to enhance solidarity among Member States should the crisis with Russia continue. It stressed the need to adopt a clear set of benchmarks which, when achieved, could prevent imposing new restrictive measures against Russia or lead to lifting of the previous ones, including: implementation of the ceasefire, unconditional withdrawal from Ukraine of all Russian troops and Russian-backed illegal armed groups and mercenaries. The European Council is invited to take up further restrictive measures and broaden their scope, by covering the nuclear sector and by limiting the ability of Russian entities to conduct international financial transactions. It believed that sanctions should be part of a broader EU approach towards Russia and of the efforts of the VP/HR to strengthen the dialogue with Moscow.

A resolution on the crisis in Ukraine: Parliament called on the VP/HR and the Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations to take steps within their power to facilitate a political solution of the Ukraine crisis that that would be respected by all the parties involved. It emphasised that such a solution must avoid a frozen conflict scenario in eastern Ukraine and Crimea. It called on the HR/VP to chart an approach that combines a principled and robust position as regards Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and the principles of international law with the pursuit of a negotiated solution to the crisis in eastern Ukraine and Crimea.

Parliament reiterated that unity and cohesion among EU Member States constitute a  prerequisite for the success of any EU strategy towards Russia. In this context, it called on the governments of the Member States to refrain from unilateral actions and rhetoric, and to intensify efforts to develop a common European position vis-à-vis Russia.

Association Agreement with Russia: Parliament stressed that the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement (AA), which includes a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (DCFTA) should constitute the roadmap for swift necessary reforms that need to be urgently implemented. It called on the Council and the Commission to spare no effort in assisting Ukraine in the adoption and, above all, the implementation of these reforms with a view to paving the way for the full implementation of the bilateral EU-Ukraine Association Agreement. They called for swifter and more substantial technical assistance by the Commission’s ‘Ukraine Support Group’.

Reform and support for Ukraine: Parliament is of the opinion that an ambitious anti-corruption programme, including zero tolerance for corruption, is urgently needed in Ukraine. It considered that the EU should explore ways to support the Ukrainian Government in enhancing its defence capabilities and the protection of Ukraine’s external borders. It also called on the Commission and the Member States to develop a major assistance plan for Ukraine based on ‘more for more’ and conditionality. It welcomed the EUR 11 billion support package for Ukraine to be disbursed over the next few years, as well as the proposal by the Commission to extend an additional EUR 1.8 billion in medium-term loans.

European perspective of Ukraine: Members reiterated that the Association Agreement does not constitute the final goal in EU-Ukraine relations and that this country has a European perspective. It may apply to become a member of the European Union, provided it adheres to the Copenhagen criteria and the principles of democracy.

Energy security: Parliament stressed the importance of energy security in Ukraine and underlines the need for reforms of Ukraine’s energy sector, in line with its Energy Community Commitments. It underlined the need to radically enhance the EU’s energy security and independence and its resilience to external pressure, as well as to reduce its energy dependence on Russia. In this regard, the EU should pursue a genuine Common External Energy Policy as well as to work for the creation of a European Energy Union.

It invited the European Energy Community to develop a cooperation agenda with Ukraine, as well as with Southern Caucasus, Central Asian, Middle East and Mediterranean countries, aiming at developing infrastructure and interconnectivity between the EU and its European neighbours.

Humanitarian crisis: Parliament stressed the need for the EU, along with the Ukrainian authorities, to devote further attention to the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine and in Crimea. It called on the Commission to prepare a robust, direct and long overdue humanitarian action, omitting intermediary organisations, in the form of ‘Blue Convoy’ type humanitarian action clearly marked as coming from the EU.

Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17: lastly, Parliament reiterated its support for the international investigation into the circumstances of the tragic downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 and reiterated its call for those responsible to be brought to justice.