Yanukovych: EU integration remains a foreign policy priority for Ukraine

KYIV, August 24 /UKRINFORM/. European integration remains a foreign policy priority for Ukraine, President Viktor Yanukovych said on Independence Square in Kyiv on the occasion of the 19th anniversary of Ukraine's independence.

The head of state noted that for the first time over the years of independence, Ukraine had come close to obtaining associated membership of the European Union. "I am confident that the Ukraine-EU summit, which will be held this autumn, will be a crucial step forward in this direction," he said. Yanukovych also noted that the establishment of high-level relations between Ukraine and Russia put no obstacles to the process of Ukraine's European integration, but, quite the contrary, facilitated it. "A united Europe needs an economically strong and democratic Ukraine, which, along with Russia, promotes the strengthening of stability," he said.

He said that such relations with Russia had been restored very quickly.

"We have raised a bilateral dialogue with the United States to the highest level and rejected highly enriched uranium. We not only supported the initiative of our partner, but also made another significant contribution to the creation of a nuclear-free world," the president said.

He noted that Ukraine had stepped up trade and economic relations with developing countries. "First and foremost, with China, where I will soon pay a state visit, with our old friends and good partners - the CIS countries, as well as with India, Brazil, South Korea, and the Middle East countries," Yanukovych said.

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