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European Council: President Barroso welcomes agreements on Ukraine
23 March 2014 12:16

At a press conference following the first day of the summit, President Barroso saluted the "strong and united determination" of EU leaders to support Ukraine and make clear to Russia "that there will be consequences for some of the kind of behaviour that we think is simply unacceptable in the 21st century".

EU leaders at the European Council asked the Commission to:

  • evaluate the legal consequences of the annexation of Crimea and propose economic, trade and financial restrictions for rapid implementation. 
  • prepare possible targeted measures for relations in a broad range of economic areas in case of any further steps by the Russian Federation to destabilise the situation in Ukraine 

On the second day of the summit, 21 March, the EU and Ukraine signed the political provisions of an Association Agreement. "This political partnership delivers on the democratic choice Ukraine has made," President Barroso said. "We will help Ukraine to reform and be the stable, sovereign, democratic, and prosperous country its people long for."

The President explained that the Commission would also continue to roll out its planned €1.6 billion in financial assistance for Ukraine – part of an €11 billion package – as well as autonomous trade measures that will open the EU market to Ukrainian products. He added that it was the EU's "firm intention" to sign the remaining parts of the Association Agreement with Ukraine "in due course". He has asked Commissioner Füle, responsible for enlargement and neighbourhood policy, to go to Kiev next week to work with the Ukrainian authorities on these issues. 

"Europe is committed to Ukraine for the long term," he said. "We will help Ukraine to reform and consolidate its independence and sovereignty." 

The EU has also agreed to bring forward the signature of Association Agreements (including Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreements), with Georgia and Moldova, setting a target signature date in June. 

 

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