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President of European Council Charles Michel plans to resign to become deputy

President of European Council Charles Michel plans to resign to become deputy President of the European Council Charles Michel (photo: Getty Images)

President of the European Council, Charles Michel, may leave his position prematurely. He intends to participate in the elections to the European Parliament, reports De Standaard.

In an interview with Belgian media, the politician announced that he has decided to participate in the elections to the European Parliament in 2024. He will run as the leading candidate for his Belgian center-right liberal party, the Reformist Movement (Mouvement Réformateur).

As a result, Charles Michel will resign from the position of President of the European Council.

"I have decided to run in the European elections in 2024. If I get elected, I will take my seat. The European Council can anticipate and name a successor by end-June, early-July," he said.

The 48-year-old Michel is a former Prime Minister of Belgium and has held the position of the head of the EU Council since the end of 2019.

Financial aid to Ukraine from the EU

Earlier, the European Commission proposed allocating 50 billion euros to Ukraine for the years 2024-2027. The leaders of EU countries discussed this initiative during the summit on December 14. However, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban vetoed the decision, despite the support of the project by the other 26 member countries.

Now, the issue of assistance to Ukraine will be reconsidered at a separate EU summit in early February. One option being considered is bilateral agreements between Ukraine and individual EU members for corresponding amounts.

On December 21, the Hungarian Prime Minister Orban stated that his position has not changed. In his opinion, any assistance to Ukraine should be provided for a shorter term than the current proposal.

On the same day, the European Commission disbursed the final tranche of 1.5 billion euros to Ukraine from the macro-financial assistance package. In total, Kyiv received 18 billion euros in the form of long-term concessional loans in 2023.

Earlier, President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen mentioned that the European Union was preparing a contingency plan to provide Ukraine with assistance amounting to 50 billion euros at the beginning of 2024.