|Victor Yanukovich, Ukrainian President|
(Image: President's official website)
After Monday’s addressing the people of Ukraine Ukrainian President Victor Yanukovich has met with several journalists in order to give them the promised interview, answer the questions and explain the details of the recent decisions of the government regarding the suspending of the process of preparing to the signing of the Association Agreement with the countries of EU.
In his Monday’s speech President has reassured Ukrainian citizens and international community following the events in Ukraine that the political course for European integration remains stable and hasn’t been changed. “There is no alternative to the Europeans way of developing the country”, stated President.
But during his wide interview given to journalist Ukrainian President announced that he is not planning to sign the Association and Free Trade Agreement with EU during the Summit of Eastern European Partnership planned to be held in Vilnius on 28-29 November.
Mr. Yanukovich has supported the decision of the state’s government declared in an official statement on 21 November and stated that all the processes of preparation to the signing of the Agreement should be suspended. Despite the massive protests being held in the country and worldwide President said he is not planning to revise the decision taken by the government.
|Protests in Kyiv|
(Image: Gazeta Lviv)
Victor Yanukovich stressed that Ukraine is currently in hard economical conditions and EU didn’t provide Ukraine with the necessary financial aid needed for the adaptation of the country’s economy to the European standards and to compensate the losses caused by the loosing of Russian market, added President. The transitional period could be difficult and painful for Ukrainian citizens, especially for the most unprotected layers of the society, that is why the government of the country and the President have taken decision to postpone the signing of the Agreement with EU until the better conditions will be proposed for Ukraine and until Ukraine will be ready economically to this step, said President during his interview.
However Victor Yanukovich is planning to visit Summit in Vilnius, but the main purpose of this visit will be holding negotiations with European politicians regarding the organizing of the trilateral talks among Ukraine, EU countries and Russian. It’s worth mentioning that this proposal was made by Ukrainian government after announcing the suspending of the preparation to the Agreement’s signing, but EU has rejected it.
Talking about the perspectives of the further relations with EU and terms and frameworks of possible signing of the Agreement Ukrainian President said that it is unknown when it could happen, but he would like it to happen as soon as possible. But EU should propose Ukraine “comfortable conditions”, added President.
|Massive rallies for European integration in Kyiv|
(Image: Lenta UA)
Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov in his turn has also announced that Victor Yanukovich will not sign an Agreement during the Summit in Vilnius. Prime Minister has also spoken about the conditions proposed by EU that are not comfortable enough for Ukraine and will not compensate the country’s losses resulted in the implementing of the measures for adapting Ukrainian industry and production to European standards and in the problems caused by the worsening relations and sanctions of Russia.
In addition to that Mr. Azarov has criticized EU for not supporting Ukraine and its economy in the hardest moments and not helping with the negotiations with IMF regarding financial aid to Ukraine.
Meanwhile Stefan Füle, EU Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighborhood Policy, said in his Monday’s statement that he didn’t hear any talks and requests from Ukrainian government regarding the necessary financial aid and support and he doesn’t recognize the numbers with which Ukrainian Prime Minister is being operating, as these numbers are totally unknown to the Commissioner and EU authorities and never have been discussed before.
|Stefan Füle, EU Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighborhood|
(Image: GEO Times)
Stefan Füle also stated EU was ready to give Ukraine financial aid and technical support and assistance and had promised also to mediate with the talks with IMF regarding the aid to Ukraine and its requirements. EU representatives have been always talking with Ukrainian colleagues about this assistance and support, though the financial assistance of EU will depend on the agreement with IMF.
Despite all of these misunderstanding EU representatives say the doors of EU are still open for Ukraine and the signing of the Association Agreement is possible.
But Ukrainian President and Prime Minister as well both denied that the document will be signed during this Summit. Yanukovich plans to attend Vilnius Summit only for negotiating the possibility of the trilateral talks with Russia. But Prime Minister thinks that the Agreement could be signed in spring 2014 when another Summit of EU and Ukraine is expected to be held.
Meanwhile tens of thousands of Ukrainian citizens remain in the squares and streets of Kyiv and other cities as well protesting the decision of Ukrainian government and demanding the signing of the Association Agreement with EU. The protests are ongoing despite the frost and snow, and the people claim they will not leave until their demands won’t be heard by the authorities of this country.