VLADIMIR PUTIN: The first question regarding the possibility of Ukraine joining the European Union does not concern us directly, although we do, of course, have our views on this matter. We always took a negative view of NATO expansion because we do not believe that this expansion can help neutralise the modern threats we face. As for enlargement of the EU, we have always seen this as a positive process. Certainly, enlargement gives rise to various issues that have to be resolved, and sometimes they are easy to resolve, sometimes not, but both sides have always shown a desire to find mutually acceptable solutions and we do find them. If Ukraine wants to join the EU and if the EU accepts Ukraine as a member, Russia, I think, would welcome this because we have a special relationship with Ukraine. Our economies are closely linked, including in specific areas of the manufacturing sector where we have a very high level of cooperation, and having this part of indeed our economy become essentially part of the EU would, I hope, have a positive impact on Russia’s economy. Since we were aware of the European Union’s position that Ukraine’s accession would be unlikely any time over the next decade, we began taking steps in two directions, On the one hand, we are creating the Common Economic Space in a large part of the former Soviet Union, including Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and Kazakhstan. On the other hand, we are building a common economic space with the European Union, and we believe this is in the interests of both Russia and the European Union countries and will harmonise our economic ties with Europe. But these projects are not in contradiction with the possibility of any country joining the European Union, including Ukraine. On the contrary, the possibility of new members joining the EU makes our projects only more realistic. But I repeat that other countries’ plans to join the EU are not our direct affair.
Que são explicáveis pelo Professor Alexander Dugin.