MOSCOW, Dec. 14 (Xinhua) -- The European Union (EU)'s reaction towards Ukraine's suspension to sign an integration deal with it was "bordering on hysteria," Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Saturday.
After studying the agreement and finding out it was not advantageous to the country, the Ukrainian government made the pullout decision. Yet such "normal" decision had triggered "rabid reaction," from the 28-member block, Lavrov said in an interview with local TV channel Rossiya 24.
"What has the government of Viktor Yanukovych done? Maybe it has withdrawn from an agreement on nuclear weapons proliferation? Or declared it is making an atomic bomb in contravention of its obligations? Or shot someone?" the top Russian diplomat noted.
The Ukrainian government's U-turn move led to mass protests in the country, pushing Yanukovych and government representatives to hold roundtable negotiations with protest leaders to solve the country's political crisis.
During the Friday roundtable talks, Prime Minister Mykola Azarov backed his cabinet decision to halt the agreement, saying that it would have harmed the economy, and pledged to work further to forge ties with the EU.
"We want to agree with the EU the conditions that would allow equalizing the balance of bilateral trade," Azarov said.
According to Lavrov, demonstrations on such a large scale with fierce slogans indicated that there could be "provocateurs" behind the scene. "I am very concerned that our Western counterparts must have lost the feeling of reality," he added.
Russia believes other countries should respect the sovereignty of Ukraine while the Western Europeans said everyone should respect the choice of the Ukrainian people towards Europe, Lavrov said.
"This means the choice has been made for the Ukrainians, and all the rest should simply respect it. This causes gloomy thoughts," according to the top diplomat.