Former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko says the American company Vanco, which is to obtain rights to develop the Black Sea shelf, is only a screen because in reality the strategic oil and gas reserves are being given to President Viktor Yanukovych’s closest associates.

"It’s clear that this is a scam, but most importantly, the American company is acting only as a cover. They’re being given only a small interest in the company, and in reality the Black Sea shelf is being given to clans that surround Yanukovych," Yulia Tymoshenko told reporters before her latest visit to the Prosecutor General’s Office, according to the official website.

The ex-premier believes that the Black Sea shelf’s strategic deposits will be given back to Ukraine only after the current government is removed in a constitutional manner. "I would like to take advantage of this opportunity to say hello to Yanukovych and tell him that it’s not that easy to steal the seas – he won’t succeed. The fact that at today’s government meeting they plan to give the Black Sea shelf to their clans is only a temporary measure. Once this government is removed, and I think this will happen pretty soon, and I would like to emphasize in a constitutional way, the Black Sea shelf will be returned to the state," she said.

Yulia Tymoshenko said that the terms of the settlement agreement Azarov’s government plans to sign with Vanco are unfavorable for Ukraine. "This is merely a new colonial policy, which we are familiar with from the 19th century, being imposed on Ukraine today. This is a new colonial policy by the clans in relation to the Ukrainian state," said the former prime minister.

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