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Ukraine, Russia agree to boost cooperation, partnership

(Global Times)

10:19, July 13, 2012

Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych Thursday met with his visiting Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, both agreeing to further economic cooperation and boost strategic partnership between their countries.

During the meeting in Ukraine's southern city of Yalta, the two heads of state discussed maritime demarcation, the price of natural gas and other issues of common concern.

After that, the two countries signed a statement on the Kerch Strait maritime delimitation.

Under the document, the Tuzla Island belongs to Ukraine, while Russia retains the right of navigation in the Kerch Strait.

The two governments and business representatives also inked a series of documents in nuclear energy, scientific research, disaster relief, and fight against terrorism.

The two sides, however, failed to make progress in the long-standing gas talks, as Ukraine seeks to cut the imports of Russian gas with a lower price to ease its overstretched budgets and Russia refuses to accept it, saying it violates their previous contract.

But Putin told a joint press conference after the meeting that Russia respected Ukraine's position on the issue, vowing to seek a final agreement as soon as possible.

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