Kremlin to 'closely' watch Ukraine's moves towards EU membership
(L-R) European Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Oliver Varhelyi, EC President Ursula von der Leyen and European Commission Chief Spokesperson European Eric Mamer give a press conference on the Commission’s opinions on the EU membership applications by Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia, following the EC weekly meeting. Bogdan Hoyaux/European Commission/dpa

The Kremlin reacted cautiously to Ukraine's moves toward EU membership after the European Commission recommended Ukraine to become an official candidate.

"Several transformations are taking place, which we are of course watching very closely," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, according to the Interfax agency.

He said Moscow is aware of the "strengthening of the defence component of the European Union."

Moscow had in the past accused the EU of transforming itself from an economic alliance into "an aggressive militant actor."

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and French President Emmanuel Macron hold a joint a press conference with Romanian President Klaus Iohannis, Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz after their meeting. Kay Nietfeld/dpa