Charles Michel, one of the EU’s most a senior officials, arrived in Kyiv on Tuesday at a time when the Ukrainians are looking for Europe for support more than ever before, reports Joe Barnes, our Brussels Correspondent.
Funding from the United States is starting to dwindle and the route into Nato is closed as long as fighting continues.
This leaves Ukraine with limited avenues to find large international organisations willing to support it with new funds and not just rhetoric. The EU is seen as perhaps the last viable option on the table.
And with war waging between Israel and Hamas, Washington has increasingly pressured Brussels to take up the mantle of supporting Ukraine.
The pledges made by European governments – including by Germany, which has announced a doubling of military support – are starting to reflect this shift.
Mr Michel, the European Council’s president, will play a key role in this assistance when he chairs talks in December over whether Ukraine can start accession negotiations with the EU and receive a €20billion military aid package.
Neither of those are certainties.
“When I say this will be a difficult European summit, this is a fact”, Mr Michel said. “I will spare no effort to have a positive decision in December, but can’t predict what happens – not everything is black and white.”