Presidential election scheduled on January 17 is a national referendum on the European future of Ukraine, said President Viktor Yushchenko at his last press conference, presidential press office reported.

"Today, two value systems are competing against each other: one is pro-Russian and the other is pro-European", he said. Therefore the President called on the society and media to take sober view of the situation. "If we act as if we do not see the situation as a challenge, we may lose not just democracy. We may loose Ukraine with its European course, democracy and national formation ", warned the President.

The first threat to the stability, sovereignty and statehood, he called criminalization of the Ukrainian authorities and deep corruption that must be overcome through constitutional reforms, modification of the electoral system, judicial and local government reforms.

In such circumstances, the President also stressed the need of consolidation of democratic forces. "The most important issue today is consolidation of democratic forces, consolidation of those candidates who can call themselves democrats", he said.

The President said that today we would conduct first formal consultation on this matter.


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