Mykola Azarov’s government will be able to reach an agreement with Russia on a lower price for natural gas only in exchange for political concessions, claims Oleksandr Turchynov, the head of BYuT central headquarters.

"The logic is such – either Ukraine has to buy gas at market prices and compensate on the domestic market, or increase domestic production, or economize gas and introduce alternative energy resource technologies, or pay with political concessions in the form of its independence," Oleksandr Turchynov said in the air of Channel 5, Yulia Tymoshenko's official website reports.

He added that the Russian side always defends its strategic interests in talks. "They are very pragmatic people. They’re not sponsors of our country. Moreover, they work very hard for their own country’s interests. And without political concessions, without concessions on economic, defense and other issues that are part of Russia’s strategy, they won’t be dumping gas," he stressed.

Oleksandr Turchynov is sure that Russia will be asking for serious concessions in exchange for a reduction in gas prices. "This will either involve the Black Sea Fleet or Russia’s other strategic interests on Ukrainian territory. In any case, this will limit our sovereignty and our independence. And this will be a very dangerous direction for negotiations," he believes.

"I’m convinced that even though our citizens are tired of the political battles, most patriots and most people are capable of defending their country’s interests and not exchanging them for the benefit of the oligarchs, who don’t want to introduce new technologies or work in a competitive market economy, but want gas dumping at the expense of their own country’s interests," said Oleksandr Turchynov.

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