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BELGRADE, December 12. /TASS/. The European Commission (EC) insists on keeping the gas transit via Ukraine by all means after 2019, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said following the talks with Serbian First Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic on Monday.
According to Lavrov, quite a few countries inside in the European Union are aware of the absurdity of the current situation when the EU "places a priority not on economic, basic interests of its members, but on ideology-driven postulates", "when the backbone of our cooperation, the energy dialogue falls the victim of absolutely ideology-driven and politicized approaches, which are aimed at excusing the absolute inability of the Ukrainian leadership to fulfill the Minsk agreements signed by President (Pyotr) Poroshenko."
"The artificial requirement to keep (gas) transit via Ukraine after 2019 by all means, even at the cost of losses for Russia and the EU countries, is a vivid example. But it is this position that the European Commission is persisting in with an art worthy of a better cause at the talks," the Minister added.
Lavrov also said that Russia considers Ukraine’s and other states’ idea of deploying permanent NATO group in Black Sea region as provocative.
"We are confident that all decisions concerning the Black Sea are to be made by littoral states, especially on what is related to security," he said. "That is why we consider the idea voiced by Ukraine and Romanian neighbors about deployment of a permanent NATO group here as provocative."