The Slovakian Prime Minister issued a stark warning about the future of his country should Russia defeat Ukraine during a panel at the World Economic Forum in Davos Wednesday.
“If Ukraine fails, Slovakia is next," Prime Minister Eduard Heger told other EU and business leaders.
"They (Ukraine) have to win,” he said.
Heger went on to criticize members of the European Union for relying too heavily on Russian energy. He urged leaders to “stop compromising” their principles when dealing with Russia.
“We basically traded our values for cheap gas and oil for too long," he said. "Compromising with Putin caused a war in Ukraine. An aggressive war, people are dying.”
Ukrainians are “shedding their own blood for our values, so we don’t have to,” Heger said.
Entry into the Union: Heger asked the bloc to work with Ukraine and the western Balkans to come up with "standardized rules so they can accede to the EU."
Ukraine has, in recent years, deepened its economic and political ties with the EU, and Kyiv has expressed a desire to join. Nations in the western Balkans have also sought accession for several years.
Joining the bloc usually takes several years, as nations must satisfy strict criteria for membership before engaging in negotiations.
However, some current EU leaders have rebuffed the idea that its membership could be fast-tracked due to the invasion.
“There’s no such thing as a fast-tracking of accession, such a thing doesn’t exist," Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said in March.