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  Sunday, November 29, 2020
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Ukraine ought not to join whatever blocs, insists Prime Minister Victor Yanukovich
"It is impossible today to make a security system in a particular area without an account for its neighbours. With us, Russia is neighbour, and we cannot overlook Europe, at the same time. We must see the European security system in the making, and ought to start doing so as soon as possible. "Ukraine must be a country out of blocs. That alone will allow it to join the making of a European security system," he said to a congress of spokesmen of Russian-based ethnic Ukrainian public organisations. Mr. Yanukovich highlighted excellent prospects for a Russian-Ukrainian free trade zone, and called to simplify frontier-crossing procedures. "Our border guard and customs officers, and transport experts have joined hands with Russians, and are together working at how to streamline those patterns. We shall together set up frontier checkpoints and simplify freight clearing. That is all a must if we are to set up a free trade zone." Ukraine may introduce dual citizenship quite soon, added the Premier. "The matter is close at hand. I shall pose the issue, and we are to grant that right to our nationals." The Russian language status is another burning issue in Ukraine. "Laws have to be passed on the matter. If necessary, we shall have a referendum. We shall certainly do it all-we have no choice," he stressed. The congress appealed to Ukrainian voters to back Yanukovich at an upcoming presidential election. "The Ukrainian poll must be aboveboard, and we are interested in the victory of a hopeful who can upkeep national peace and security. We appeal to Ukrainian citizens to support Victor Yanukovich as the only candidate who is able to cement the country and its community. He is the man to guarantee further economic progress, and to protect our country's genuine sovereignty; the man to ensure its goodneighbourly relations with Russia. "We deem it necessary to keep up the policies of close Russian-Ukrainian ties as equal sovereign partners. Close teamwork alone can help our two countries to secure a worthy place in the world as full-fledged competitive figures in the global economy and influential political forces able to stand up for their interests," the congress says in its summing-up resolution.
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