BRUSSELS, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- The European Union (EU) on Monday urged all sides in Ukraine to continue an inclusive dialogue to end the political crisis and pledged help for the country's political and economic reforms.
But some doubted that the EU's efforts would effectively make Ukraine look west instead of east.
"The reality of today is the economic crisis in Ukraine requires immediate help, which the European Union has failed to provide," Helmut Scholz, a member of the European Parliament, told Xinhua in an interview.
Ukraine has been rocked by nearly three months of anti-government protests sparked by President Viktor Yanukovych's refusal in November to sign an association agreement with the EU and his acceptance of a 15 billion-U.S.-dollar loan package from Russia instead.
The political deadlock is also pushing Ukraine's economy closer to the brink. The government faces bankruptcy without outside financial help, while Moscow has suspended its loan payments.
Scholz stressed that the EU ignored the element of Russia when carrying out its Eastern Partnership policy.
"Looking to the reality of Ukraine today, the people, the citizens are having different expectations, and the country is clearly divided into the Western part, which belongs more in the zone of interests of the European Union, and the Eastern part, which has clear orientation toward Russia," said Scholz.
Scholz said he believes it is not time to turn Ukraine into a close partner by instant policy, while the best solution is not to put Ukraine into this gap between the EU and Russia.
"Eastern Neighborhood policy is good instrument for Ukraine. Nevertheless, it has provided too much confrontation with Russia," Scholz added.
However, the EU's effort to bring Ukraine closer to it will not cease.
"The European Parliament has called for the immediate launch of a new EU mediation mission at the highest political level to secure a peaceful outcome to the current crisis in Ukraine," Arnoldas Pranckevicius, an advisor to President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz, told Xinhua.
At the end of an EU foreign ministers' meeting on Monday, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said: "We focused on the need to continue to urge the dialogue between President Yanukovych and the opposition leaders. We're also working closely with civil society leaders."
The foreign ministers also pledged help "on the basis of a new Ukrainian government pursuing economic and political reforms."
EU urges inclusive talks of all parties in Ukraine
BRUSSELS, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- The European Union (EU) urged Monday all sides in Ukraine to continue inclusive dialogue in order to put an end to the crisis in the country.
The EU has been following closely the continuing political crisis in Ukraine, and hoped the people of Ukraine understand they have the EU's supports, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said after a foreign ministers' meeting. Full story