Former EU boss spreading ‘Russian narrative’ – Zelensky
Allegations of rampant corruption in Ukraine are a “Russian narrative” designed to erode Western support for Kiev, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky claimed on Friday.
Speaking after the summit of the bloc’s leaders in the Spanish city of Granada, Zelensky accused former president of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, of spreading Russian propaganda about Ukraine. Earlier this week, Juncker said Ukraine was plagued by corruption “at all levels of society” and should not be accepted into the bloc any time soon.
Zelensky insisted that “not a single dollar was stolen from our partners” amid the conflict with Russia, but admitted that there were “different people and cases.”
“First of all, it is the well-known Russian narrative about corruption. They understand that they cannot split the overall unity of Europe and support for Ukraine. The US and its intelligence services learned about the roots of the idea, how to undermine society, support in the world,” Zelensky said.
Instead of spreading the purported “Russian narrative” about Ukraine’s corruption, Juncker should have personally done more for Ukraine, Zelensky suggested.
“That is of no interest for him? Now he decided to write some Russian narratives since everyone has forgotten who he is? I think it’s stupid,” Zelensky said.
Juncker, who chaired the European Commission between 2014 and 2019, made the controversial remarks in an interview with Germany’s Augsburger Allgemeine newspaper, published earlier this week. He argued that Ukraine should undergo “massive” reforms before it can join the EU, while Brussels “should not make any false promises to the people in Ukraine who are up to their neck in suffering.”
“Those who have dealt with Ukraine know that this is a country that is corrupt at all levels of society,” Juncker had said.