EU ambassador to Ukraine Matti Maasikas to step down this summer

Matti Maasikas.
Matti Maasikas. Source: Office of the President of Ukraine.

Matti Maasikas, Estonia's European Union Ambassador to Ukraine, is to end his four-year term in summer. He will be replaced by Katarina Mathernová, current deputy head of the European Commission's Directorate-General for Enlargement (DG NEAR).

Maasikas had been in the Kyiv-based post since 2019; his replacement is part of the routine rotation of EU permanent representatives.

He is one of three Estonian diplomats who currently head up the EU's missions abroad, along with Tiina Intelmann (EU Ambassador to Somalia and, in the past, head of the EU's delegation to Liberia) and Riina Kionka (formerly head of the EU's representation to South Africa and now the union's ambassador to Pakistan).

The EU's External Action Service (EEAS) is, by its decision, maintaining its strong support for Ukraine's designs on EU membership; pan-European news website EurActiv says it has seen an internal document on new appointees to external EU posts which demonstrates this.

Katarina Mathernová is from Slovakia, which shares a border with Ukraine, and her resume includes working on EU neighborhood policy and enlargement, which regularly entailed working with Ukraine's authorities.

The European Commission is due to publish its assessment of Ukraine's readiness to start accession talks this year. 

Of other appointments from the region, Jovita Neliupšiene, Lithuania's deputy foreign minister and its former ambassador to the EU has been appointed as the EU's new ambassador to the U.S., ERR reports, citing EurActiv.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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