U.S. Senate passes resolution supporting Ukraine in bid to join European Union

On Senate floor, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) calls Ukraine 'our friend and ally,’ seeks fulfillment of Association Agreement criteria
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(PR NewsChannel) / November 18, 2013 / WASHINGTON  

A resolution passed unanimously today in the U.S. Senate says that Ukraine’s future “rests with stronger ties to Europe, the United States, and others in the community of democracies” and expresses hope that Ukraine, which has had historical ties to Russia, will join the European Union.

“Ukraine is our friend and ally,” said Sen Dick Durbin, the second highest ranking democrat in Congress, today on the Senate floor. “It helped us in Libya and Afghanistan. It’s leadership rightly sees its future with the West.”

On November 28, the European Union and Ukraine will hold a summit meeting in Vilnius, Lithuania where Ukraine could officially become a part of the EU by signing an Association Agreement between the two sides.  

Ukraine is expected to meet the conditions to join the European Union, and will sign a deep and comprehensive free trade agreement which will provide tangible economic benefits to both sides. The country is finalizing the remaining criteria which includes finding a solution to the release of former Prime Minister Tymoshenko, and changes to the judicial code.   Ukraine’s parliament, the Verkhova Rada, has taken all of the remaining decisions into discussion and is widely expected to complete the fulfillment of the EU’s conditions. 

Over the last several months Russia has levied substantial pressure on Ukraine in an effort to steer the country away from the EU. Ukraine pays the highest gas price to the Russians as a result of a contract signed by the previous Prime Minister, Yulia Tymoshenko. The contract has inflicted severe damage to the Ukrainian economy, and the country is now under considerable pressure from Russia to honor the difficult terms of the agreement. 

The Association Agreement comes on the heels of Ukraine passing many important reforms in the last several months including judicial, electoral and economic measures to align itself with the West and strengthen its democracy. The signing of the agreement between the two sides would amount to an historic event bringing the East and the West together. 

Direct link:  https://prnewschannel.com/2013/11/18/u-s-senate-passes-resolution-supporting-ukraine-in-bid-to-join-european-union/

SOURCE:  Religious Association for Equality for All

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