Azarov says neither he nor Putin know reasons behind 2009 gas deal

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Aug. 5, 2011, 1:14 p.m. | Politics — by Interfax-Ukraine
Mykola Azarov has said he has asked his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin more than once what reasons, in his opinion, caused Ukraine's then Premier Yulia Tymoshenko to sign the 2009 gas exports deal with Russia on terms that were unfavorable to Kyiv. "I have asked Putin this question several times: 'What made you sign this admittedly unfavorable contract with Ukraine?' He told me that he himself does not understand these reasons, and it would be advisable to ask Ukrainian officials themselves how they advocated Ukraine's interests," Azarov said at a court session in Kyiv on Friday.

Azarov said that as soon as his government started to work, it announced plans to review the gas supply deals with Russia.

"As soon as I assumed the prime minister's duties, I studied all of the materials linked to the signing of these agreements between Naftogaz Ukrainy and Gazprom. My aim was to find arguments in favor of reviewing them. We forwarded our arguments to the Russian side and agreed to look for mechanisms that would allow us to review these agreements," Azarov said.
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