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Ukraine pres visits Lithuania to discuss European integration, ties

February 06, 2013, 9:10 UTC+3
The sides are expected to sign a ‘road map’ of the development of strategic partnership between the two countries for 2013-2014
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KIEV, February 6 (Itar-Tass) – Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich on Wednesday pays an official visit to Lithuania, where he will take part in the sixth session of the council of the heads of two states and will meet with Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite, the head of Ukrainian president’s administration reported.

The sides will pay priority attention to the issue of Ukraine’s European integration, in particular preparations for a Ukraine-EU summit and the signing of a Ukraine-EU association agreement,” Sergei Levochkin said.

They will also look into ways to give a boost to trade and economic ties, energy and transport cooperation as well as to deepen cultural-humanitarian ties between Ukraine and Lithuania, he said. The sides are expected to sign a ‘road map’ of the development of strategic partnership between the two countries for 2013-2014.

Dalia Grybauskaite, who visited Ukraine last May, said after visiting in hospital ex-prime minister Yulia Timoshenko sentenced to prison for an abuse of power in the signing of gas agreements with Russia in 2009, that prospects of Ukraine’s European integration “are getting increasingly vague” because of its political position.

According to her, it is possible to remedy the situation, however, “it depends only on Ukrainians themselves whether they will take advantage of that possibility, whether they will prefer the course of rapprochement with Europe or that of self-isolation”.

Ukraine’s European prospects will be assessed proceeding from how Timoshenko’s right to getting an adequate medical help is ensured, how other oppositionists in prison are treated and how the human rights are observed and domestic reforms are carried out, the Lithuanian president stressed.

Nevertheless, Ukraine expects a backing from Lithuania which, according to the Ukrainian side, remains consistent and firm in supporting Kiev’s EU integration bid.

In 2011 trade between Ukraine and Lithuania exceeded one billion collars, which is sizably bigger than trade with Latvia and Estonia that in 2011 stood at 319.9 million dollars and 255 million dollars accordingly. Ukraine emphasizes the energy, transport and trade-investment sectors as most promising in economic cooperation with Lithuania.

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