"There is not even the slightest reason at all to discuss the matter in serious. Whatever bilateral disputes there were [over the Tuzla spit, which links the Russian and Ukrainian shores of the Kerch Strait, between the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov] have been settled for now.
The Sea of Azov does not belong to international waters. It is a Russian and Ukrainian territory, and Russia and Ukraine do not want any third parties there," Mr. Khristenko said emphatically at a business lunch on the editorial premises of the Rossiiskaya Gazeta, a Moscow-based official daily.
"How active the Russian government intends to be in promoting Russian capital expansion to Ukraine?" one of the gathering asked him. The Vice-Premier was aphoristic in his reply: "Politicians vote with their hands, business people with their money. Business has long made its choice. Look at Ukrainian petroleum-processing industry-Russian companies have a lion's share in it, and both sides are happy about the arrangement."