Poroshenko signs law on discontinuing friendship agreement with Russian Federation
President Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine has signed the Law on Discontinuing the Agreement on Friendship, Cooperation, and Partnership between Ukraine and the Russian Federation, the presidential press service has said.
"We must regard the non-prolongation of our Agreement with Russia not as an episode but as part of our strategy towards the final breakup with our colonial past and re-orientation towards Europe. The other components of this strategy are as follows: a visa-free regime, an agreement on the association with the EU, the tomos on the creation of an independent autocephalous Church in Ukraine, the discontinuance of our membership of the CIS, the mentioning of our aspirations to join the EU and NATO in the Ukrainian Constitution, the creation of a professional Ukrainian army, the support of the Ukrainian language, our own history, and the strengthening of our national identity," Poroshenko said.
He said the agreement had not been canceled earlier only because its provisions were useful as a basis for numerous lawsuits Ukraine has filed to international courts and other international institutions against Russia as the party that violated the agreement and the norms of international law. He cited some of the clauses of the agreement, which say that the parties "develop their relations with each other on the principles of mutual respect,… recognition of territorial integrity, the inviolability of borders,… the non-use of force, the non-interference in the internal affairs,… the fulfillment in good faith of the international obligations taken,… and the norms of international law…"
The president said that early in 2019 the next ten-year term of the agreement comes to an end and Ukraine has to decide whether to prolong it officially. He said that "the choice is clear—to cancel [the agreement.]"
Poroshenko said Ukraine has used all the possibilities of this agreement for the good of its national interests.
As earlier reported, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on December 6 voted to discontinue the current friendship agreement with Russia.