EU approach to Ukraine confrontational: Russian FM   2014-02-13 16:20:36

MOSCOW, Feb. 13 (Xinhua) -- The European Union (EU)'s approach to the situation in Ukraine is confrontational and illogical, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Thursday.

In an article published on the ministry's website, Lavrov said the EU's Eastern Partnership program has become increasingly confrontational, coercing Ukraine into facing a choice between Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States on one side, and the EU on the other.

Moscow is unhappy with such an approach, which contradicts the logic of erasing dividing lines in Europe and looks like an attempt to move that line eastward, Lavrov said Thursday.

He noted that Russia believes it is up to any country, including Ukraine, to make a decision on its geopolitical alignment. Moscow expects its European parters to adopt the same attitude, the top diplomat said, adding that Russia was surprised to find out the EU and the United States, however, have made a choice for the Ukrainians in advance.

"Russia stands for a common economic and humanitarian space stretching from Lisbon to Vladivostok. However, that has not yet become a principal position of the decision-makers in Brussels," Lavrov said.

Rallies in Ukraine began last November protesting Kiev's decision to suspend the signing of political and trade deals with the EU, in favor of keeping closer ties with Russia instead.

Discontent intensified on Jan. 19, when protesters attacked police with sticks, fireworks and petrol bombs. At least four people were killed during the unrest and hundreds of others, including police officers, were injured.

Lavrov concluded that history shows peace and stability in Europe can only be established if Russia actively participates in European affairs, while attempts to isolate Russia have always led to catastrophic processes.


Video>>>EU calls for constitutional reform in Ukraine

Ukrainian president meets EU commissioner over political crisis

KIEV, Feb. 12 (Xinhua) -- Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych on Wednesday met with European Union (EU) Commissioner for Enlargement Stefan Fule to discuss ways out of the political stand-off in the East European country, the presidential press service said.

During the talks, Yanukovych praised the active role of the EU in resolving Ukraine's crisis and emphasized the importance of an objective and impartial evaluation of internal political processes in the country, said the statement. Full story


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