Scholz apparently wants to travel to Kyiv soon

The Federal Chancellor has not visited Kyiv since the beginning of the war, even if there were invitations. According to one report, however, a journey could be imminent – and not alone.

Berlin.

According to a media report, Chancellor Olaf Scholz is planning a trip to Kyiv – before the G7 summit at the end of June.

French President Emmanuel Macron and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi are also said to be there, as the “Bild am Sonntag” reported on Saturday, citing French and Ukrainian government circles. A spokesman for the federal government did not comment on the report in the evening. The only answer from the Élysée Palace in Paris was: “No, we do not confirm this information.”

Numerous heads of state and government have traveled to Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian war of aggression at the end of February. Only at the weekend was EU Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen visiting the Ukrainian capital for the second time. There she also spoke with President Volodymyr Zelenskyj.

G7 summit at the end of June

Ukraine hopes to attend the summit of European leaders on 23. and 24. June is declared a candidate for EU accession. The EU Commission intends to make a recommendation on this in the coming week – although a decision on candidate status does not anticipate possible admission and is also not linked to a time frame. Shortly after the EU summit, we will meet from 28. until 28. June led by Scholz the G7 countries at Schloss Elmau near Garmisch-Partenkirchen.

Scholz recently said he would only travel to Kyiv if there were specific things to discuss. The Élysée Palace said on Friday that Macron was available for a visit to Ukraine, but that there were no concrete travel plans and dates yet. Such a trip could take place before, but also after the EU summit. There was no talk of a joint visit with Scholz or Draghi. The purpose of a trip by Macron will be to open up a European perspective for Ukraine or to set it in motion, it said.

No “quick in and out with a photo op”.

Selenskyj had already invited Scholz to Kyiv weeks ago. At first, however, there was resentment because of the short-term cancellation of a trip by Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier from the Ukrainian side. After the irritations had been cleared up, Scholz pointed out that such a trip was not about symbols, but about content: “I will not join a group of people who do something for a short in and out with a photo shoot . But if, then it’s always about very concrete things.”

A number of his ministers have since been to Ukraine: Annalena Baerbock (external, Greens), Svenja Schulze (development, SPD) and most recently Karl Lauterbach (health, SPD) and Cem Özdemir (agriculture, Greens). Parliament President Bärbel Bas (SPD) and opposition leader Friedrich Merz (CDU) also visited Kyiv.

Balkan instead of Kyiv

Instead, the Chancellor toured five Balkan countries on Friday and Saturday. This trip also dealt with the topic of EU accession. Six countries in the Western Balkans were promised admission to the European Union 19 years ago. Not a single one of them is close to joining today. Two do not even have the candidate status that Ukraine is now hoping for.

Scholz commented positively on the recent visits to Kyiv by the Leyens, Lauterbachs and Özdemirs. “I welcome all these trips,” he said. They are not surprising to him and all make sense, which is also the standard for such trips. When asked if and when he would travel to Ukraine himself, the chancellor did not answer. (dpa)

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