Is the EU doing enough to help Ukraine? On 24 February 2022, Russian troops invaded Ukraine, escalating the Russian-Ukrainian war that began in 2014. The following months have been catastrophic for Ukraine and a shock for the rest of Europe. For EU states, the question is how to support Ukraine and weaken Russia at the same time? For the first time, the European Union is proposing joint weapon-purchasing in order to replenish stocks sent to Ukraine. European countries – most notably Germany – are now racing to boost defence spending.

With the aim of massively weakening the Russian economy and elites, the European Union, together with its international partners, has adopted a series of sanctions packages against Russia. But the sanctions were softened in some respects by the veto of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. Moreover, Europe remains the largest buyer of Russian energy with imports worth 57 billion euros since the invasion began, 12.1 billion going to Germany alone.

The war has driven millions of Ukrainians out of their country. In response, the EU has activated protection status for Ukrainian war refugees. Since then, it has taken in more than 3.6 million Ukrainians (as of 6 July). Most of them are staying in neighbouring countries. Is it enough?

What do our readers think? You sent us YOUR questions and comments and we forwarded them to two experts! You can find their answers here!

  • Manal Fouani, UNDP Permanent Representative in Ukraine
  • Dima Al-Khatib, UNDP Permanent Representative in Moldova

First, reader Zeynep sent us this comment:

I think that our support does not go far enough. We can’t leave Ukraine alone or Putin will do the same to other countries. The man is insane.

Next, Jakob sent us this comment:

What I found surprising and beautiful was the willingness of many neighbouring countries to take in the Ukrainian war refugees and really support them.

Finally, our reader Leon sent us this comment:

Now it is more important than ever that Ukraine gets all our support.

Is Europe offering enough support to Ukraine? Is the EU’s support sufficient? Could the EU do more to share the burden of taking in Ukrainian refugees? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!

Image Credits:  troyanphoto on Bigstock. Portrait: Serhii Mynenko / UNDP Ukraine

Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Commission. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.

23 comments Post a commentcomment

What do YOU think?

  1. avatar
    EU-Reform Proactive

    The political options for the EU & its folks have become very limited. Even the pragmatic adherence to its treaty enshrined enlargement criteria has to be sacrificed on the altar of ‘realpolitik’.

    It is not a matter of whether the EU support is now considered enough or not- it has become a ‘forced’ decision by the principle of the survival of the fittest This disaster was diplomatically avoidable and should be a sobering lesson.

    Politics and politicians, in general, are gamblers and opportunists by probing and pushing the limitations of risk and are flabbergasted and surprised once they ignited their overheated political theatre- they believe to control.

    Diplomats with their diplomatic skills are relied on to be alert from the time the ‘curtain is raised’ and not enter during Act 2 or when the show has finished. It is too late to fish for answers or screw their heads off to have them dry-cleaned. To- happy-go-lucky miss- or over-sleep the overture of a political tragedy is unforgivable!

    The Ukrainian- Russia drama did not start on the 24th Feb, but before and after the fall of the USSR in 1990 already. The various milestones since then bear historical witness.

    The event on the 24th Feb 22 was triggered by a deceptive, cagy and deranged KGB agent named Putin- cynically declaring suddenly a ‘limited operation. The Ukrainian chapter should be presented in its entire context and not selectively.

    The (obvious) ‘unlimited and undeclared’ step-by-step EU treaty aspirations- to enlarge the EU into oblivion, to create an EU army or to enlarge NATO- are enough reasons to drive any powerful and unpredictable dictator nuts!

    82-year-old US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is another example that grandmothers should rather care for their grandchildren at home. Her probable last visit to Taiwan (to fill her memoirs) could have been labelled as private and yield such official ambition to the US president. We might equally witness a sudden but ‘limited operation’ by a determined China. And than?

  2. avatar
    Adrian L

    “What I found surprising and beautiful was the willingness of many neighbouring countries to take in the Ukrainian war refugees and really support them.”

    What this guy will find even more “surprising” is that these countries have limited patience. And some are reaching their “empathy” limit just like in 2015.

  3. avatar

    It is our war, of all Europe and all civilised persons.

    • avatar

      What would you like to see Europe do?

    • avatar
      Adrian L

      SEND WEAPONS! oh what ever we should do?
      Oh I dunno, maybe thoughts and prayers. Hmm?

  4. avatar

    The europeans, (EU) are doing what we can and are able to do…
    I don’t like that some countries do refuse, delay a lot or find excuses to not respect the energy embargo imposed to Russia!
    The embargo has to be very clear and respected by all, otherwise Kremlins regime will use any financial opportunity to survive and continue this very dangerous war!
    The countries which depend on oil and gas from Russia shall not waste time to find other sources in the world as fast as possible!
    EU, USA, other countries and parties who tried and still continue “to negociate” with Putin and his regime, do mistakes!
    There is nothing to negociate more than Russia to retray back its trups from occupied territories! And Putin and his troops to know always deadlines imposed to them!
    That’s the right aproch towards them, not staying at the table to negociate!
    In this way, we gave and give russian regime the impression that they can do whatever they want, because in the end they get something out of it! And most of the time they did! You must study russian history to see that they based themselves always on those cruel tactics of getting something out of wars!
    For them everything as small it is (for example a small island) is very important and they can use it one day!
    Sorry but there is a difference in points of views and interests between East and West!
    Until now, Putin and his regime got this impression that they had and still will get something out of their “sacrifices” in their cruel wars.

    • avatar

      How would you go about defining what “our war” is?

  5. avatar
    JT HK

    To save Ukraine is not to fuel the war by giving arms for the Ukrainian to fight to died till the last Ukrainian. The post-World War world order is to solve international conflicts with peaceful means. I have not seen any effort from European governments to help solve the conflict by peaceful means. Instead European governments are seeking to fuel a third world war to sustain the American hegemony against all interests of the European people.

  6. avatar
    JT HK

    The Russia and Ukraine war is a proxy war. Ukrainians are fighting to revive neo-Nazism and bringing Europe to the interwar period of the last century.

  7. avatar

    We shouldn’t be involved in the first place.
    Ucraine is not a NATO nor a EU country.
    The conflict is between two oligarchic corrupt government (one of the two installed illegally after a coup in 2014 that put neonazi and extremist at the helm)..
    One of the two recently suppressed all opposition parties and sistematically attack a minority group inside it’s border so much so that a third nation was able to support a separatist movement in it’s most russophobe parts…
    Why are we involved again?

  8. avatar

    Yes we do enough .this war is a manipulation from Usa to weaken Russia and Europe

  9. avatar

    Definitely not! Sending Ukraine weapons which are then sold on the black market is not enough!!! We need more of those 🇺🇦 profiles of the EU to join the brave mercenaries on the front! 😉🥳

  10. avatar

    Support needs only PEACE
    Bloody conflict must stop now!

  11. avatar

    Support for the Ukrainians to die in war? Does not this show clearly that Europe has been lip servicing PEACE and humanity?

  12. avatar

    If I am an Ukrainian, I would not fight for a proxy war which would not do any good for my own people and my own family.

    • avatar

      Equally, European should not be suffering for a dying hegemonic power which has been so long be built upon a permanent suppression of European development. Europe has been the origin of modern society, how come it has declined as today? Why postwar Europe social and economic development failed to compete with a war torn and backward China which has been in extreme poverty under permanent sanction and containment by the US? What we can say is that Europe has lost its sovereign power to govern their own people for the goods of Europe as we have seen today. Irrational sanction against Russia is killing Europe and Ukraine, while the US is sucking blood from Europe to survive.

    • avatar
      Adrian L

      Would you fight for your country TO STILL EXIST??

  13. avatar

    Of course not, Ukraine has not fought to the last man.

  14. avatar
    JT HK

    Who is offering support to the impoverished EU citizens in this energy and food crises?

  15. avatar

    EU’s representatives should pleid, each time they have the chance publically, that russians, belarusians and other minorities of Russia to not involve in this war against Ukraine! Rather to fight for their rights!

  16. avatar
    JT HK

    By sending more tanks to Ukraine is not to save Ukraine but to fuel the third world war and to kill Europe. By clearing military inventories on more powerful European states such as France, Germany and Italy, Poland and Ukraine would have huge stocks including that from the US, EU states would be real danger. Such danger might be coming from Russia and also from a possible new NATO with overall control by the US, Poland, Ukraine and other small East European states such as Lithuania, as Emmanuel Macron said, the US is not doing as a friend should do. On the one hand, the US has forced Europe to terminate its reliance on Russian energy and gas and even had the pipelines bombed, on the other hand, the US is selling LNG to Europe 4 times more expansive in Europe.

  17. avatar

    Let’s hope so! They will need EU’s support for a long time…

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