President Viktor Yushchenko held a joint press conference with his Romanian counterpart, Traian Basescu, in Bucharest on Tuesday, the President’s press office reports.

Yushchenko welcomed and approved results of the first meeting of the Ukrainian-Romanian Presidential Commission and said both countries had confirmed their “common desire” to develop ties. “We share the will to develop bilateral relations,” he said and added that the status of the presidential commission was “adequate to the challenges facing Ukraine and Romania today.”

The Ukrainian leader praised economic relations between two countries and said they had signed a protocol which “gives answers to about twenty initiatives” on their agenda. “To my mind, we have inventoried all our problems and have decided with President Basescu to rid our relations of inherited misunderstandings and disagreements.” He said one of such problems was the construction of a navigable link between the Danube and the Black Sea.

Yushchenko said the commission had also discussed national minority issues and the region’s frozen conflicts.

Basescu thanked Yushchenko on behalf of his nation for giving him a list of the Romanians that died in Ukraine between 1944 and 1954. “We will not forget this gesture and will be grateful to Ukraine’s leadership for it,” he said, pledging to support Ukraine’s bid to join the European Union and NATO.

Also, President Yushchenko said Ukraine would adhere to environmental laws and its international obligations when building a navigable link between the Danube and the Black Sea,

“Ukraine will fulfill all its international obligations on the protection of the environment. We believe this is a national sovereign territory with a sovereign economy which is being used and explored,” he said and added that this subject had been discussed during today’s talks.

He said Ukraine and Romania had agreed to monitor all projects carried out in the Danube estuary.

Also, two leaders signedtwo documents: Protocol of the Meeting of the Ukrainian-Romanian Presidential Commission; Agreement Between the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine and the Government of Romania on Economic, Industrial, Scientificand Technical Cooperation.


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