EU and Ukraine reaffirmed commitment to strategic partnership
Service of the Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine, posted 09 July 2018 18:47

Joint statement following the 20th EU-Ukraine Summit held in Brussels on 9 July 2018, confirmed unwavering stance of the European Union on the Ukrainian-Russian conflict and outlined the key priorities of strategic cooperation between Ukraine and the European Union.

The statement reaffirms a continuous commitment to strengthening the political association and economic integration of Ukraine with the European Union.

The European leaders welcomed the substantial  increase in bilateral trade flows and placed a special emphasis on the acknowledgment of the European aspirations of Ukraine and its European choice.

"We took stock of the wide-ranging reform process undertaken by Ukraine and welcomed the commitment to continue its implementation and ensure its sustainability", the joint statement says.

A separate paragraph of the document is dedicated to the fight against corruption in Ukraine. The EU leaders noted  the work already done in this area and welcomed the adoption of the law on the High Anti-Corruption Court as an important step forward in the fight against corruption.

The document clearly states the stance of the EU countries on the Russian aggression. The European Union considers Russia as an aggressor and continues to call for the full implementation of the Minsk Agreements.

"Taking note of the efforts already made by the Ukrainian authorities, we agreed on the need to continue to address the socio-economic and humanitarian consequences of the conflict in an inclusive manner", the document says.

The last paragraph of the statement is dedicated to the tragic downing of flight MH17.The European Union calls on the Russian Federation to accept its responsibility and to fully cooperate with all efforts to establish accountability.

Following the adoption of the joint statement  President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko emphasized that Kremlin must accept a deployment of the UN-led multinational peacekeeping operation at the whole temporarily occupied districts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, including the uncontrolled part of the Ukrainian-Russian border.

Petro Poroshenko stressed his appreciation concerning the recent decisions of the EU Council to prolong EU’s economic and sectoral sanctions against Russia until 31 January 2019 as well as the Crimean package of sanctions for one year.

"Despite all fake Russia-sponsored calculations, the sanctions make Kremlin pay a huge price for its international crimes. And it will keep paying until Kremlin changes its behavior", the President of Ukraine claimed.

President of the European Council Donald Tusk once again assured that the EU continues providing its unwavering support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence. The non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol also remains unchanged, he said.

"Recently, we have expanded the list of persons banned to enter the European Union - this happened after holding Russian presidential elections on the Crimean peninsula and launch of construction of the Kerch Strait Bridge without the consent of Ukraine", the President of the European Council stressed.

"We keep on demanding full implementation of the Minsk agreements and underline Russia’s responsibility for the war in the east of Ukraine. A few days ago the EU leaders unilaterally agreed to prolong our economic sanctions against Russia for six months. According to the UN, over 10 thousand 250 people have been killed in this conflict since 2014, over 24 thousand 600 people have been wounded. And all this is happening in Europe", Donald Tusk emphasized.

"Today's jubilee 20th summit confirmed the staunchest position of the EU to further support the restoration of the territorial integrity, sovereignty, and independence of Ukraine in counteracting Russia's aggression against our country. The sanctions against Russia's actions in the Ukrainian Crimean peninsula and the Ukrainian Donbas have been prolonged, and the names of all illegally detained and imprisoned Ukrainian citizens are listed for the first time in the text of the joint statement. The Summit highly praised Ukraine's achievements in implementing the Agreement, the growth of trade flows between Ukraine and the EU the basis of the possibilities of free trade zone, and also set clear priorities for deepening sectoral cooperation in the energy, digital and customs sectors, in the field of justice, freedom and security", Vice Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration of Ukraine Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze commented on the joint statement following the results of the 20th EU-Ukraine Summit.