Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Statement by Herman VAN ROMPUY, President of the European Council, following his meeting with Viktor YANUKOVYCH, President of Ukraine

"I am pleased to welcome President Yanukovych back to Brussels. Our regular meetings demonstrate the continued dynamism of the EU - Ukraine relationship.

We have continued our discussion on issues of fundamental importance for the EU - Ukraine relationship, ranging from the status of the Association Agreement and the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area, through a broad range of reforms.

Ukraine is seeing a period of political stability, based on a strong parliamentary majority. This enables Ukraine to move forward with important reforms. The agreement found between Ukraine and the IMF on a new Stand-by Arrangement demonstrates the government's willingness to find solutions. Fulfilment of the criteria of the Stand by Arrangement will enable the EU to move forward with the disbursement of our Macro-financial Assistance to Ukraine.

With Ukraine moving forward in her reform process, the EU stands by her side, to support and assist with both advice and financial resources.

Ukraine is a European country, and we share basic core values, on which we build our societies. Democracy, the rule of law and respect for human rights are the core values we share and strive to implement in practice. We also discussed the importance of guaranteeing the independence of the judiciary and the freedom of the media.

Over the past years, Ukraine has received considerable respect for the consolidation of democracy and the freedom of speech. Ukraine's legacy as an open society is an important one, and needs to be further built upon.

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