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2 January 1999
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President Of Ukraine And Prime Minister Of Great Britain Send A Message To Leaders Of Major Nations Urging Their Contributions To The Chornobyl Shelter Implementation Plan

On December 30, 1998 President Leonid Kuchma signed a message in conjunction with British Prime Minister Tony Blair to leaders of ten major nations who have not, so far, joined the international effort toward financing the Chornobyl nuke's Shelter Implementation Plan. The news was disclosed at a briefing at the Presidential Administration Office by Volodymyr Ogryzko, chief of the Office's department for foreign policies. Through 1998, significant progress was achieved attained in Ukraine's contacts with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development toward financing construction of two additional reactors at the Rivne and Khmelnytsky NPPs, Mr. Ogryzko further said.

President Kuchma Awards "Order Of Merit" To Foreign Minister Tarasyuk

Ukraine's President Leonid Kuchma has awarded the Order of Merit, Second Degree to Ukraine's Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk, the presidential press service reported on January 2. Mr. Tarasyuk was awarded the honor in recognition of his personal contribution to raising Ukraine's international influence as well as for his long years of diplomatic service.

Economization Is Major Trend In Ukrainian - Russian Relations, Foreign Minister Tarasyuk Says Sizing Up 1998

Relations between Ukraine and Russia have assumed a more dynamic dimension with economization posing as a major trend, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk said on December 29, 1998 by way of sizing up the outgoing year. Mr. Tarasyuk singled out the ratification of the major political treaty between Ukraine and Russia by the Russian State Duma as 1998's most significant event. He also stated the issue of sharing the former USSR's property abroad as the major problem the two nations are still to resolve toward harmonizing their relations.

President Kuchma Receives Letter From U.S. Vice President Al Gore

Ukraine's President Leonid Kuchma has received a letter from the United States Vice President Al Gore. In his letter, Mr. Gore gave high approval of the Ukrainian government's economic reforms and measures taken by the government to minimize the effect of the Russian financial crisis on the Ukrainian economy. Mr. Gore expressed further support for the Ukrainian leader's efforts. Mr. Gore offered expert assistance in drafting further economic reform programs. He also proposed overcoming the current financial crisis through Ukrainian government organs' cooperation with the United States Agency for International Development and the United States Treasury Department. The United States vice president wished Ukraine further success in implementing economic reforms, adding that Ukraine can always count on United States assistance.

Ukraine To Seek Closer Ties With European Union In 1999

Ukraine's main foreign policy task in 1999 will be closer integration with the European Union and improvement of relations with Russia, Volodymyr Ohryzko, head of the Ukrainian Presidential Administration's Foreign Policy Department, told journalists on December 30, 1998. "The European Union has to understand that Ukraine needs to receive a serious political signal that the future of Ukraine is to be in the Union,'' Mr. Ohryzko said. He hailed Russia's ratification early this month of the Ukrainian-Russian major treaty. According to him, Russia has officially recognized Ukraine's independence and territorial integrity. ``Any dispute about territorial claims to Ukraine has come to an end,'' Mr. Ohryzko said.

Ukraine's Foreign Policy Over 1998 Has Been Consistent, Predictable And Anything But Sensational

There have been no sensational news in Ukraine's foreign policies over 1998, Volodymyr Ogryzko, head of the foreign policies department within the Presidential Administration Office, said at a news briefing on December 29, 1998. The nation's foreign political course which President Leonid Kuchma has guided, has been based on two fundamental principles, that is, consolidating Ukraine's independence and sovereignty and real economic benefits resulting from diplomatic steps, Mr. Ogryzko said. Mr. Ogryzko sized up the outgoing year as a major diplomatic success in the nation's Euro-Atlantic integration bid.

Canadian Prime Minister To Visit Ukraine In January

Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretien is to pay a two-day official visit to Ukraine starting on January 27, Volodymyr Ohryzko, head of the Ukrainian Presidential Administrations' Foreign Policy Department, told a news conference on December 30. ``During the visit we expect Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma and the Canadian prime minister to discuss economic cooperation between the two countries and other issues,'' Mr. Ohryzko said. Mr. Chretien also is to meet Ukrainian Prime Minister Valeriy Pustovoitenko and other senior Ukrainian officials.

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