During a plenary session in Brussels, the European Parliament adopted two resolutions on the foreign and security policy priorities of the European Union that mention the aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine.

The annual report on the implementation of the Common Security and Defence Policy in 2020, prepared by Estonian MEP Sven Mikser, was adopted by the European Parliament with a majority of votes (387 MEPs voted in favour, 180 against, and 119 abstained).

This document contains important points for Ukraine. In particular, the preamble says that the report took into account the fact of Russia’s military intervention and illegal annexation of Crimea, as well as systematic and deliberate violations by Russia of air and sea borders of EU member states.

The European Parliament, which approved the conclusions of the report, reiterated “its commitment to the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine and of all the other Eastern Partnership countries; expressed serious concerns about the situation in Belarus and stressed its support to the sovereign and democratic choice of the people.”

Paragraph 13 of the report directly refers to the situation in Ukraine, Georgia, and Moldova, and Russia’s actions against these countries in violation of international law.

“The European Parliament is concerned that Russian Federation military forces are still occupying large parts of Ukraine and Georgia in violation of international law, that they are still present in the Republic of Moldova, and that Russia continues to destabilise peace and security in the region,” the document reads.

At the same time, MEPs confirmed the conclusion that Russia is conducting an unprecedented disinformation campaign in the European Union’s Eastern Partnership countries.

In addition, Paragraph 64 of the document notes the concern of the European side over the increasing militarisation of the Crimean peninsula and the attempts by the Russian Federation to destabilise the Black Sea region, with this situation having led to the recognition of the vulnerability of the eastern flank of the North Atlantic Alliance at the NATO Summit in Wales in 2014.

“The European Parliament calls on the EU to recognise the vulnerability of eastern European Member States as a means of strengthening European defence, and to develop, together with NATO, a comprehensive strategy for securing and defending the eastern flank,” the document says.

Another report on the implementation of the EU’s Common Foreign and Security Policy in 2020, prepared by Chairman of the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee David McAllister, received 340 votes in favour, 100 against and 245 abstentions.

“The European Parliament reiterates its condemnation of Russia’s aggressive policies vis-à-vis Ukraine… its violations of the rights of the Crimean Tatars, its blockade of the Azov Sea, and its continued seizure of Ukraine’s gas fields in the Black Sea. The European Parliament remains fully committed to the policy of non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea; calls on Russia to assume its responsibility, to use its influence over the Russian-backed separatists, and to fully implement its commitments under the Minsk agreements,” the document reads.

In addition, the European Parliament recognised Russia’s negative role in frozen conflicts along its borders and condemned the Russian Federation’s pressure on its immediate EU neighbours. In particular, it is about Russia’s violation of the territorial integrity of Georgia and Moldova.

At the same time, the European Parliament recognised that the instability and unpredictability at the EU’s borders and in its immediate neighbourhood represent a direct threat to the security of the Union and its Member States.

As a reminder, MEPs previously called for a thorough review of relations between the EU and the Russian Federation, given a comprehensive analysis of its actions.

Bohdan Marusyak

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