Ukraine continues to insist on the revision of extremely disadvantageous gas contracts with Russia signed in 2009; in recent times Moscow has eased its stance on the issue, Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov said in an interview with ICTV channel.

"Now, generally speaking, there is such a promise [to revise contracts]," he stressed, Interfax-Ukraine informed.

Referring to the claim of Batkivschyna opposition party leader Arseniy Yatseniuk that Russia assigned $20 billion to the Ukrainian government in exchange for the refusal to sign the Association Agreement with the EU Azarov said: "It is empty talk. The greatest compensation for us is the preservation of the trade and economic regimen with Russia which we used to have."

Azarov also said that the government appealed to the EU for assistance in conditions of the crisis aggravated by the pressure of Russia and the Custom Union in the hope that that the EU would also influence the position of the International Monetary Fund.

However, the only promise given by the EU was that it could assign approximately $1 billion euro during seven years while the IMF said it was ready to extend a loan equivalent to Ukraine's indebtedness to the fund - about $4 billion.

"We don't need such handouts in exchange for practically ruining our economy," the Ukrainian Premier said.

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