13:27 08.05.2012

Yalta summit postponed, says Foreign Ministry

The 18th summit of the presidents of the Central and Eastern European countries, which was scheduled for May 11-12 in Yalta, has been postponed indefinitely, the Foreign Ministry of Ukraine has announced.

"Due to the fact that a number of European heads of states are unable to attend the summit of the presidents of the Central European Countries in Yalta, Ukraine found it reasonable to postpone it until a later date," said the spokesman for the Foreign Ministry, Oleksandr Dykusarov.

"Considering all circumstances around this event that was to be held in Yalta, Ukraine has decided not to hold it," the spokesman said.

He added that the summit would not take place on May 11-12, while diplomats would choose another date for holding it.

The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry reported earlier that the presidents of ten countries, Poland, Albania, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Macedonia, Romania, Slovakia, Croatia, Montenegro and Moldova, gave their consent to take part in the summit. Four more presidents, of Hungary, Serbia, Latvia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, preliminary agreed to attend the summit as well.

However, the presidents of Germany, the Czech Republic, Slovenia, Austria and Italy then announced that they will not participate in the summit, the ministry reported. The German and Czech presidents cancelled their planned visits to Ukraine in protest at the prison conditions for former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.

Later the president of Croatia decided against visiting Yalta, protesting against human rights violations in Ukraine. He was followed by the presidents of Estonia, Latvia, Bulgaria and Hungary.

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