Pacts with Moldova, Georgia, expected from EU summit in Lithuania

Nov. 28, 2013 at 3:12 PM
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VILNIUS, Lithuania, Nov. 28 (UPI) -- A summit in Lithuania is important because it is expected to produce an association agreement with Moldova and Georgia, the European Union said Thursday.

A statement from the European Commission said the agreement would also include "a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area," Interfax reported. A visa facilitation agreement is expected to be signed with Azerbaijan and a Common Aviation Area Agreement initialized with Ukraine, the statement added.

A meeting of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy and EC President Jose Manuel Barroso is expected Thursday night before a dinner that formally opens the summit, said EC spokesperson Pia Hansen.

At the meeting, Van Rompuy and Barroso were expected to tell Yanukovych the EU is ready to sign an association agreement with Kiev as soon as conditions set by the EU are met.

The EU has accused Russia of putting economic and political pressure on Ukraine to delay signing the agreement, the Voice of America reported.

Russia has denied the allegations.

The pact includes a provision requiring the release from prison of former Ukrainian prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko, who the EU believes was jailed for political reasons.

Tymoshenko has begun a hunger strike in an effort to force Ukraine to sign the agreement.

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