Barroso rules out possibility of EU-Ukraine-Russia negotiations
The EU-Ukraine association agreement cannot be elaborated in the EU-Ukraine-Russia tripartite format, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said.
He rejected as unacceptable the tripartite negotiations and the interference of a third country in the bilateral agreement and said there could not be a tripartite format in the elaboration of the bilateral agreement between the EU and Ukraine. Barroso made the statement at a press conference after the Eastern Partnership Vilnius summit.
Barroso said they had respect for sovereignty; the agreement with a sovereign country, Ukraine, had been initialed and whenever a bilateral agreement was on the agenda both sides should agree that it was a bilateral affair. He said they did not hold negotiations with a third country when they concluded an agreement with Canada, for example. There cannot be a tripartite format in the conclusion of EU agreements with another state, Barroso noted.
The strategic partnership with Russia did not mean that the EU would agree to any interference of a third country in its bilateral relations with another state; that is a matter of principle, the European Commission president said.
He also they could not agree to a third country's veto as a condition for a bilateral agreement, as that would disagree with all principles of international law, Barroso said.