“Change of gas prices for Ukraine is connected with the fact that earlier Gazprom was exerted pressure by the Russian government, as Ukraine was Russia’s ally. The situation has changed now, so gas prices for Ukraine became the same as for others. Gazprom in this case speaks from the economic point of view,” Head of Political Studies Institute Sergey Markov said at a news conference on December 28, REGNUM informed.

According to Markov, “within January 2006 Ukraine’s population will not be affected by gas problems as the country has enough gas to provide for uninterrupted supply for some time, but it will be a solution only for a short period of time.”

As Markov thinks, “if the elections pass well, Yushchenko  will win the second or third place, which he shares with Timoshenko, and then the Ukrainian Parliament will appoint the government of Yushchenko’s opponents, and he himself will become a president, like in Germany or Italy, whom nobody knows. So, Yushchenko’s election campaign headquarters, where American political strategists boss, plan to detonate the situation and stage another, ‘gas’ recolution. They will try to rally people under anti-Russian slogans, they organize provocations against the Russian Black Sea Fleet and other Russian objects. So, if Gazprom prepares itself to negotiations on a most severe scenario, the opposite party prepares a non-negotiable scenario.”

According to Markov, “in this situation, when anti-Russian hysteria will be stirred up in Ukraine, Western politicians, who now support the rational position of Gazprom, will support Yushchenko. As a result, all conditions will be met to introduce NATO troops into the country.”

“The extremely economic Gazprom position in this case, to my mind, is incorrect,” said Markov. “I think, that Gazprom should sign an agreement with parties opposing Yushchenko – Victor Yanukovich's  bloc, Leonid Kuchma’s bloc and so on. So, the Ukrainian people voting for these blocs will vote in the long run for continuation of gas supplies at low prices and friendly relations with Russia. Because most Ukrainian people, despite the anti-Russian propaganda, do regard Russia as a sister country and stand for a unified economic space with Russia, introduction of Russian as the second official language, and oppose state intervention into religion. Deepening the conflict with Ukraine, Russia will lose one of its main strategic allies.”


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