Putin’s Visit To Help Strengthen Military, Security Ties: Yushchenko

KIEV, Ukraine -- Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Ukraine will help strengthen relations between the two states in the security and military spheres, Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko said on Thursday.

“We consider the upcoming visit to Kiev by Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin as an important stage, which will help strengthen our relations, including in the sphere of security and in the military sphere,” the Ukrainian president said at talks with visiting Russian Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Sergei Ivanov.

The Ukrainian leader stressed the importance of two strategic documents to be signed. One of them is on cooperation in the security sphere, while the second one is a program of cooperation between the two states for 2007-2008.

These documents will incorporate all projects on which the sub-commissions functioning within the framework of the Putin-Yushchenko inter-state commission work, the president said.

The president also came out in favour of a boost in joint steps by the two states to promote weapons and military hardware on the armament markets of third countries.

Yushchenko also focused on the upcoming in 2007 firing practice of Ukrainian Air Force units on the Russian firing range Telemba outside Chita and Ashuluk near Astrakhan.

Russia’s deputy prime minister, for his part, informed the Ukrainian president about the results of the first session of the sub-committee for security within the framework of the Russian-Ukrainian inter-state commission.

He also said Russia was ready to offer assistance in Ukraine’s joining the NATO anti-terrorist Operation Active Endeavour in the Mediterranean.

Source: Itar-Tass