Senior EU diplomat regrets slow start of Ukraine’s training plan


BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union’s top diplomat on Monday criticized the bloc’s slow moves to set up a military training mission for Ukraine’s armed forces, as foreign ministers prepare to discuss the plan next week. .

“We had been discussing the Ukraine training mission before the war. Before the war. For months, for months before the war,” EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell told a conference of ambassadors from the 27-nation bloc.

“Then the war comes and people say, ‘Oh, we should have done it. Yes, we should have. And now we’re doing it fast. Well, quickly. By the standards of European standards”, said Borrell between laughs of the envoys. “Fast by European standards means a couple of months.”

EU foreign ministers are scheduled to discuss the training mission in talks in Brussels on October 17, nearly eight months after Russia launched the war. Several EU and NATO member nations are already helping to train Ukraine’s armed forces on a bilateral basis.

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