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KIEV, July 27 (Itar-Tass) - Russia’s President Vladimir Putin thanked Ukraine’s President Viktor Yanukovich for the opportunity to meet during the celebration of the 1025th anniversary of the Baptism of Rus.
Addressing the Ukrainian president, Putin said: “It is our common holiday, which reminds us about the spirit of unanimity, about the common roots, and about how much has been done over the previous centuries. We are ready, based on what our predecessors have achieved, to move forward.”
“I am happy to state our personal contacts and good contacts at the governmental level. We have many joint issues to be solved, and we shall have another meeting tomorrow. It will be, thank to you, a common holiday, and we shall be able to discuss major issues of cooperation in the security aspect,” Putin said.
Yanukovich thanked Putin for the participation in the celebration of the 1025th anniversary of the Baptism of Rus in Kiev.
“This holiday proves the unanimity of our peoples. The holiday’s importance is enormous, and we shall do our best to celebrate it well,” he said. “Ukraine’s many cities are organising festive events. And the participation of presidents of the Orthodox republics of Serbia and Moldova will add to the holiday’s importance,” Yanukovich said.
He suggested discussing briefly the current agenda of the negotiations.
“We have many mutual interests, many questions, which could favour development of the mutual cooperation between the two countries in a wide range of sectors,” Ukraine’s president said.
Earlier, the Russian presidential press service said the two presidents “will continue the dialogue on Ukraine’s joining the integration processes in Eurasia - the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan and the Common Economic Space. Experts say if Ukraine joins the CES, its economy may have additional GDP growth of between one and 6.5 percent.”
The presidential press service reported another traditional topic at the negotiations between Putin and Yanukovich would be the energy.
“The parties continue the work on development of the legal base in the gas sector. They will discuss cooperation in the nuclear energy. Russia is a leading supplier of nuclear fuel to Ukraine’s nuclear power plants. The issue to discuss is also the joint construction of the third and fourth energy blocks of the Khmelnitskaya nuclear power plant.”
On July 28, president of Russia and Ukraine’s president will come to Sevastopol to participate in the celebration of the Russian Navy’s Day.
Since 2000, Vladimir Putin has made 28 visits to Ukraine, where 23 during his presidency and five during his premiership. His latest visit to Yalta was exactly a year ago.