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Watch: Roberta Metsola Warns Against ‘Peace In Ukraine At All Costs’ And Keeps Door Open To Gas Price Caps

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European Parliament President Roberta Metsola has warned against any kind of peace deal with Russia that will see Ukraine losing part of the territory it had prior to the invasion.

“If a ceasefire means declaring peace at the cost of Ukraine and its territory, then I don’t think that will be something the EU should accept,” Metsola told a press conference today.

“When we talk about peace without liberty and justice, then it shouldn’t be peace at all costs.”

She said the European Parliament and EU member state leaders within the European Council are adamant that Ukraine must be at the table of any future ceasefire talks.

“I don’t think we should risk talking about appeasement or saving face,” she said. “I think it’s about making sure that when a country in our continent is invaded, that country should be helped… in fact, it should have been helped earlier and quicker… to defend the very values that we all share in the EU.”

European leaders are currently convening in Brussels at a summit to discuss the European Commission’s proposed ban on Russian oil imports as retaliation for the Ukraine war.

These talks come as inflation has soared across Europe, with energy prices hitting record highs this year, forcing consumers to pay higher electricity bills or national governments (as in the case of Malta) to spend public funds to cushion the impact.

At this week’s summit, EU member states will discuss a proposal by Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi to implement a cap on wholesale gas prices, so as to help reduce inflation.

Questioned by an Italian journalist about this proposal, which has been resisted by the likes of Germany, Metsola left the door open but warned that the devil will undoubtedly be in the detail.

“When we talk about common purchasing power, will we pool in our resources, use unspent funds, find new funds or move funds away from what we would have otherwise spent on say, ODA [development aid] as member states?”

“We’re asking these questions at the EP and different committees but also at national parliaments.”

“We’re taking difficult decisions that have a cost; how can this cost be cushioned from being shouldered by consumers and citizens? They’re asking us, and rightly so, when this will end.”

However, she warned that this necessity to relieve consumers of immediate economic pain must also be balanced out by responsibility not to increase national debt loads to unsustainable levels,.

“The next few weeks and months will be very difficult but let’s not allow ourselves to be at the mercy of any division that Putin will seek to take advantage of,” she concluded.

This article is part of a content series called Ewropej. This is a multi-newsroom initiative part-funded by the European Parliament to bring the work of the EP closer to the citizens of Malta and keep them informed about matters that affect their daily lives. This article reflects only the author’s view. The European Parliament is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.

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Tim is interested in the rapid evolution of human society brought about by technological advances. He’s passionate about justice, human rights and cutting-edge political debates. You can follow him on Twitter at @timdiacono or reach out to him at [email protected]

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