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Moscow Calls for New Talks on EU-Ukraine Association

© Sputnik / Grigoriy Sisoev / Go to the photo bankDeputy Foreign Minister Vasily Nebenzya
Deputy Foreign Minister Vasily Nebenzya - Sputnik International
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Deputy Foreign Minister Vasily Nebenzya believes that it is necessary to hold new round of talks on Ukraine’s European integration at ministerial level.

Russia never put the right of Ukraine to develop partnership relations with the European Union at question, it only warned of the economic risks that such relations entail, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said. - Sputnik International
Lavrov: Russia Never Questioned Ukraine’s Right to Partner Up With EU
MOSCOW, December 30 (Sputnik) — Moscow is urging a fresh round of ministerial talks on Ukraine’s European integration, Deputy Foreign Minister Vasily Nebenzya said in an interview with RIA Novosti.

“We believe that we should get together for another round of talks at the ministerial level, to start the work of an expert group to find answers to our concerns, which we have voiced in contacts with both Brussels and Kiev,” Nebenzya said.

Nebenzya stressed that Russia has presented a list of concerns to the European Union but has not received a reply.

The Ukraine-EU Association Agreement is a treaty that presupposes political and economic association between the parties. The political provisions of the agreement were signed in March, after an interim government came to power in Ukraine. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed the economic part of the agreement in June.

Pro-European Union activists stand guard at a barricades under EU, left, and Ukrainian national flags - Sputnik International
Ukraine-EU Association Agreement Alternative to Membership: Former Official
In September, the agreement was ratified by the parliaments of Ukraine and the European Union.

Moscow has repeatedly stated that the implementation of the agreement carries economic risks for Russia and Ukraine, and could trigger an uncontrolled flow of duty-free goods from Europe, forcing Russia to take measures to protect its market. Russian officials have warned Kiev that going ahead with the agreement might result in Ukraine losing the CIS market. European leaders have stated that the European Union’s trade agreements with former Soviet countries are not directed against Russia.

In September, Russia, Ukraine and the European Union agreed to postpone the entry of the Association Agreement into force until January 1, 2016.

Earlier in December, the head of the economic section of the of the Russian Embassy in the United States, Mikhail Kalugin, told Sputnik that the issue of Ukraine's economic integration could be solved through the creation of a bigger free trade zone that would comprise both the Eurasian Economic Union and the European Union.

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