Ukraine - Yulia Tymoshenko: Determining Priority – European Integration

KIEV, Ukraine -- Yulia Tymoshenko, the leader of the united democratic opposition, believes that European integration should be Ukraine’s foreign policy priority and at the same time is in favor of building good relations with neighboring countries.

Ex-Premier Yulia Tymoshenko

"From opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko’s point of view, European integration is a determining priority. Does this contradict good relations with Russia? No, it doesn’t. A mistake was made by those who wanted to integrate Ukraine into the EU on an anti-Russian platform. This was a serious strategic miscalculation," Hryhoriy Nemyria, former vice prime minister for European integration and deputy head of the Batkivshchyna Party, said in an interview.

He stressed that European leaders have always supported Yulia Tymoshenko’s foreign policy moves while she was prime minister. "I haven’t heard anyone in Europe say that the new gas contracts from January 2009 are bad for Ukraine, Russia and the EU. To the contrary, they give Tymoshenko and Putin credit for reaching a compromise," said Hryhoriy Nemyria.

The former vice prime minister added that that upcoming month and a half will be "critical from the point of view of what can be done regarding a revision of the gas contracts."

"We understand that there may be a package that will be offered in exchange for so-called cheap gas. In the modern world there is no cheap gas, because in exchange you’ll have to give up something that can harm the national interests. The opposition will be keeping a close eye on the situation so that this doesn’t happen," he said.

Source: ISRIA