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Russia denies "blackmailing" Ukraine over trade with EU, CU

English.news.cn   2013-08-29 20:21:03            

MOSCOW, Aug. 29 (Xinhua) -- Moscow does not force Ukraine into the Customs Union and is surprised with European allegations on the matter, Russian Foreign Ministry said Thursday.

"We do not impose on Ukraine the decisions the Ukrainian leadership and people must make by themselves," the ministry's spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said in an online statement.

The diplomat noted that Russia has been stunned with the recent statement of some European Union officials that Moscow allegedly blackmails Kiev and attempts not to let Ukraine join the free trade zone with EU.

Lukashevich said Russia did not mind Ukraine's association with Europe but warned that this would result in destruction of the Ukrainian industry.

He also pointed out that after Ukraine's association with the EU the conditions for trade between Ukraine and Russia-Belarus-Kazakhstan Customs Union would seriously deteriorate.

"We urge the EU not to distort reality by giving emotional assessments but offer objective economically sound scenarios of socioeconomic development of Ukraine after signing the Association Agreement," Lukashevich said.

Kiev is set to sign key agreements with the EU in November, including one on free trade.

On Wednesday, Ukraine reiterated its long-term commitment to strategic partnership with Russia, saying Kiev does not see any prerequisites to terminate its close cooperation with Moscow.

However, the imminent free trade deal between Kiev and the EU has got on Moscow's nerves as the Kremlin is worried that EU goods entering Ukraine, free of import duties, and then being re-exported to Russia and two other CU members would pose competition for Russian goods.

Editor: Fu Peng
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