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Yanukovych: Ukraine's future belongs in Europe

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Aug. 25, 2011, 1:23 p.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine
Ukraine's future belongs in Europe, Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych has said. "In this climate of global uncertainty and competing geostrategic interests, the connections between Europe and Ukraine are all the more important. Ukraine needs Europe. Just as important, Europe cannot afford to leave Ukraine behind," Yanukovych wrote in an article for The Wall Street Journal published on the newspaper's Web site.

However, the Ukrainian president said he believes that Ukraine will not be able to achieve this goal alone, and called on "our European friends to support our efforts."

At the same time, the Ukrainian president said that Ukraine's historical connection to Russia would continue to be very important.

"The key to prosperity for our people and the development of our natural and human resources lies in a deeper and more developed integration with Europe and the West," the president wrote.

Yanukovych said that Ukraine serves as a bridge connecting European, Russian and Asian markets.

"With a territory larger than France, one that is home to a third of the world's most fertile soil, Ukraine has often been referred to as the "breadbasket of Europe," the head of state said.

He also noted that Ukraine's strong economic ties with the EU would only increase after they finalize an Association Agreement later this year, which will be "a springboard to future EU membership."

The president also stressed that the reforms that are going on in Ukraine are aimed at bringing the country's economy in line with European standards.

"There is more work to be done in our transformation. Replacing the remnants of Soviet corruption with transparency across all areas - including government administration, business and the judiciary - remains a challenge. No person should be immune from the consequences of his actions regardless of political standing or social stature. Without accountability, Ukraine's transformation will be unattainable. Without the rule of law, Ukrainian citizens will have their daily lives complicated," Yanukovych said.

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 1:27 p.m.    

There will be no Europe with criminals in power.Yanukonvict keeps forgetting that he is a convicted criminal with no credibility. No one trusts him, believes him, or respects him! He is a disgrace to our country! Shame!!!

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 3:02 p.m.    

There will be no Europe with the Ukraine.

Never.

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 3:49 p.m.    

Its Just Ukraine. Not The Ukraine. There is not more then one. The artcicle The does not apply. In the past it refered to The Ukrainian SSR (There was more than one SSR) You do not say The America... But you do say the United States becuase there is more then one state.

Fact is there is no Europe without Ukraine. Ukraine is the geographical centre of Europe

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 5:09 p.m.    

Ukraine may be the &quot;geographical centre of Europe&quot; based on that large part of european Russia but Europeans consider the political centre of Europe to run through Germany. Ukraine is considered a European fringe contry and most Europeans (western) abjectly DO NOT want Ukraine included in the EU. Ukraine is seen as a buffer country to maintain space between political Europe and the Asiatic Russians. Get used to that arrangement. Just as many Ukrainians only consider their &quot;ridny&quot; as family and others as &quot;chuzi&quot;, traditional and political Europe sees Ukraine as &quot;chuzi&quot; and not part of Europe. The sooner you appreciate that fact, the sooner you can get about creating your own future.

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 9:05 p.m.    

very good and open-minded comment

thank you Sir

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Anonymous Aug. 30, 2011, 4:34 a.m.    

You are ignorant not only of geography, but also of history. It was the Ukrainian Kozaks that saved Europe from the Asiatic Turks, in the Battle of Vienna, that some stupid liberal Europeans want to bring into the European Union. Do study some European history and stop being such a stupid. BTW, Yaroslav the Wise of Kyivan Rus' was known as the &quot;Father in Law of Europe&quot; because 4 of his daughters married KINGS in Western Europe including the King of France.

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 9:04 p.m.    

This is what YOU think.

The Ukraine is more Asian than European.

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Anonymous Aug. 26, 2011, 1:31 p.m.    

We in WESTERN EUROPE do want UKRAINE in the EU....we need UKRAINE in teh EU...as soon as UKRAINE join the EU the better! :)

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 6:12 p.m.    

True. Hard to imagine Kharkiv, Donetsk, Luhansk, and Mariupol as even remotely &quot;European&quot;. L'viv, maybe, but that's about it. Even Kyiv feels more &quot;Soviet&quot; than European.

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Anonymous Aug. 26, 2011, 7:09 a.m.    

Kyiv soviet? Last time I was there it had McDonalds. It must

Be European

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Anonymous Aug. 26, 2011, 1:33 p.m.    

Yep..opposite the train station...and (thanks to the 20 little known facts about UA)....the third busiest McDonalds in the world :)

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Anonymous Aug. 30, 2011, 4:39 a.m.    

McDonalds in Kyiv, not something to brag about being America's worst hamburger. America's businessmen have sure duped Europe into letting them put up these horrible fast &quot;junk&quot; food &quot;reataurants&quot; all over Europe.

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Anonymous Aug. 30, 2011, 4:27 a.m.    

What planet do you come from? This is the year 2011 on planet Earth and you in your ignorance and stupidity seem to be still confusing Ukraine and Russia. Here on planet Earth people like you are known as Ukrainophobes.

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 4:04 p.m.    

I sincerely hope UA does get into EU, will make my life a lot easier as resident in both UK and UA

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 3:46 p.m.    

PACE and the Venice Commission have both recommended that Ukraine adopt a full parliamentary system of governance. This is the correct solution.

The EU should once again advocate this course of action. It should state categorically that if Ukraine wants to join the EU community then it must adopt a Parliamentary system of government.

Yanukovych peviously supported Ukraine adopting a European Parliamantry model of governance, Now that he is President he has worked hard to consolidate power in teh hands of the President

Ukraine will never be a free independent democratic state under a presidential system

The EU should present Ukraine with a draft model constitution along the lines of Finland’s Constitution and recommend that Ukraine use that model as a basis for Constitutional reform. They should also recommend changes to Ukraine's judicial processes so as to bring them in line with European values and European systems of justice.

.

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 3:54 p.m.    

&quot;There is more work to be done in our transformation. Replacing the remnants of Soviet corruption with transparency across all areas - including government administration, business and the judiciary - remains a challenge. No person should be immune from the consequences of his actions regardless of political standing or social stature. Without accountability, Ukraine's transformation will be unattainable. Without the rule of law, Ukrainian citizens will have their daily lives complicated,&quot; Yanukovych said.

How is it that Yushchenko has escaped accountability for his abuse of office and denial of Ukraine's consitutional democratic rights?

The President of Ukriane is the only person who holds abolute immunity.

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 6:43 p.m.    

The Euro zone is falling apart so it doesn't matter.

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Anonymous Aug. 25, 2011, 6:50 p.m.    

Russia fell apart a long time ago.

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Anonymous Aug. 26, 2011, 6:52 a.m.    

Except they don't trust you Yanu, you are on the same level as that one in Belarus. No one wants to buy your book and no one wants you to visit them except for Moscow or Belarus. Why even the Poes don't want you to come. You are pretty much of a undesirabhle these days.

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