EU Hopes Fade As Gas Lobby Triumphs

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Dec. 16, 2011, 12:19 a.m. | Ukraine — by Vlad Lavrov, Yuriy Onyshkiv

Ukrainian billionaire Dmytro Firtash (above) reportedly told ex-U.S. Ambassador William B. Taylor that ex-Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko (top right) deserved to be prosecuted for the 2009 gas deal she reached with Russia that eliminated Firtash co-owned RosUkrEnergo from the bilateral gas trade. Two years later, that’s just what happened to Tymoshenko. Some analysts say the natural gas lobby in Ukraine is trying to derail Ukraine's integration with the European Union, while others say this influential group actually favors closer ties to the West.

Vlad Lavrov

Kyiv Post staff writer

Yuriy Onyshkiv


On the eve of the Dec. 19 Ukraine-European Union summit, Kyiv’s chances of making a breakthrough in relations with Brussels appear to be fading.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 12:56 a.m.    

Just because you keep repeating yourselves doesn't make the story true.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 3:07 p.m.    

Quacking freedom and democracy while building police state will not fool the EU.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 1:22 a.m.    

This story could be pure conspiracy or it could be very close to factual... it really doesn't matter because the reality for sure is this.... the President and his majority control in Parliament have no desire to join the E.U. and most likely never did. They can make the needed changes that E.U. membership requires anytime they want. They do not want it. It is quite easy and quite logical to see. You do not need a high level of intelligence to see this. In the end I believe it is all just a big cover and excuse to bring Ukraine back closer to Russian control and perhaps even membership in the Ussian controlledCustoms Union.

Do not be surprised when it is announced.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 9:43 a.m.    

An alternative reason for not meeting the demands of the EU may be that we wish, (I am Ukrainian and always lived in Ukraine), to avoid being in the same position as the rest of the EU countries. We have our own constitution, make our own laws and govern ourselves which can not be said for those countries that have joined. Being closer to Russia is by far more advantageous to Ukraine, and in my own experience seems to be the desired choice of the majority. A referendum on the subject would bring these expensive and time consuming talks to an end. I find it very disturbing that nations waving the flag of democracy should wish to deny the democratic rights of others to conduct themselves by their own constitutions. How long would it be before Germany, France or the American banks decided to do with us as they have with Greece and Italy? They no longer have elected governments and the voice of the people is ignored.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 5:36 p.m.    

I wonder where you got all this (mis-)information from. Certainly not by watching western television or reading western newspaper.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 1:26 a.m.    

“They [the gas lobby] are first of all acting in their own interests, but they are also Russia’s agents of influence, because everything they do is in the interests of Gazprom against Ukraine’s interests.”

Yuriy Shcherbak, Ukraine’s former ambassador to the United States

I have personally met the former Ambassador and am sure that he knows what he is talking about. The EU should not let the current administration's policies keep Ukraine from entering into closer ties with the EU. Tymoshenko has likewise stated that her mistreatment should not prevent closer Ukrainian ties with the EU.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 3:28 a.m.    

The article makes sense and serves the Ukraine's best interests. The Ukraine never belonged in the Europan Union. what is important however is not to allow the peasant population of the west ukraine to espouse their bourgeois nationalism which will only drag the rest of the country into the abyss as what happened dring the failed years of Yuschenko &amp; Tymoshenko.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 4:36 p.m.    


bourgeois nationalism ??


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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 5:19 a.m.    

Yanukovych...Firtash...the lot of them in the POR are the 5th columnists of Ukraine who are doing Moscow's dirty work.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 6:32 a.m.    

Russian extremists and Party of Regions create myth the East/West Ukrainian people are different. There is a difference in that East Ukrainians are victims of Party of Regions oppression that Yanukovych is trying to impose on West.

From Zik UA 30 october 2011;

Party of Regions building up administrative resource

Last week, the media was full of reports that workers are forced to join the PR at Rinat Akhmetov-owned steel plants Azovstal and Illich...

Pressuring the staff to join the PR is typical for other areas in Eastern Ukraine.

In April 2011, media carried reports that Kharkiv university students were forced to join the PR.

Application for membership were disseminated by one of the deputy deans who warned students of possible “difficulties” they may have during their exams.

At the same time, Kharkiv-based human rights activist Yevhen Zaharov told the German Wave he had also received complaints from school teachers who had been pressed to join the PR.

Consequently, the PR is returning to the 2004 practice of using administrative levers to pressure Ukrainians into joining its ranks.

What may happen has been known since 2004: new PR members will be “asked” to enroll their wives and 10 relatives. Then they will be instructed how to vote. Otherwise, their salaries will be at risk.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 10:50 a.m.    

well east and west ukraine are different, if anything. there are tons of surveys, polls and research to prove this, regardless of the russian extremists.

the one (and his/her team) to pull this country out of retarded and isolated state it is now will have to face this problem first and foremost, as well as detrimental social patterns of lack of trust and responsibility causing endemic corruption not only at the central government level, but practically everywhere.

self-delusion will not pave a path, make no mistake about that.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 3:05 p.m.    

Rid Party of Regions rule by intimidation and extortion in the east and the east - west situation will normalize.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 3:34 p.m.    

You are talking out of your ass!

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 7:57 a.m.    

Ukraine does not need anything beyond free trade with either Russia or the EU. Either are too prone to but into domestic affairs .

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 8:21 a.m.    

Ukraine's domestic affairs = 1,000 rich non taxpayers rotating in and out of power during the years, and wrestling with each other across party lines to milk the country's resources for their clans and families. While the other 46 million live like cattle in cattle conditions.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 8:06 a.m.    

Ukraine needs enhanced trade with all comers, as long as they do not meddle in domestic affairs.

In particular China and the rising Yuan are of interest; this could lead to enhanced exchange reserves and telling The International Monetary Fascists(IMF) to get lost.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 8:19 a.m.    

Hmm you think China is less meddlesome than Russia? Good luck with that. Keep taking Chinese loans and Ukraine will soon learn about China.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 4:17 p.m.    

Firtash made big money in gas because there is big money to be made in gas business.Tymoshenko hurt the country by engaging in populist nonsense.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 10:45 p.m.    

Big money...but only if your stealing it like Firtash has been doing.

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 5:24 p.m.    

He acquired three in the past two years, reportedly with about $1 billion in financing provided by Russian banks.

Read more:

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Anonymous Dec. 16, 2011, 7:35 p.m.    

The Party of Regions must be destroyed.

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Anonymous Dec. 17, 2011, 1:21 a.m.    

Not gonna happen.

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Anonymous Dec. 17, 2011, 3:22 a.m.    

That's what Russians said about the Soviet Union. LOL!!!

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Anonymous Dec. 17, 2011, 12:46 a.m.    

Why is Tymoshenko sitting in jail and Firtash is thumbing his nose at the world? and how did an honest a fireman became a billionaire. Only in Russia and Ukraine. The key word here is &quot;honest&quot;. His day will come.

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Anonymous Dec. 17, 2011, 8:28 a.m.    

In addition to money China is the largest maker of solar panels good for replacing as enegy

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Anonymous Dec. 20, 2011, 3:56 p.m.    


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