Ukraine’s President Viktor Yanukovych, right, shakes hands with European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, left, next to European Council President Herman van Rompuy in Vilnius, Lithuania, Thursday, Nov 28, 2013. Van Rompuy and Barroso met with Yanukovych hours before Thursday’s start of the Vilnius summit in an attempt to cajole him into signing the long-planned association agreement as soon as possible after the two-day meeting. (AP Photo/ Mykhailo Markiv, Pool)
VILNIUS, Lithuania (AP) — With Russia warily looking on, European Union leaders on Thursday implored Ukraine to sign a landmark association agreement and reverse the geopolitical defeat they suffered last week when the former Soviet republic sought closer ties with Moscow instead of Brussels.
Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych shocked the 28-country bloc by freezing the long-negotiated deal days before it was due to be signed. EU leaders continued to express guarded optimism for the future even as the first day of a two-day EU summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, appeared to end on a low note for the bloc’s effort to change his mind.
Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski said there was no chance to sign the deal after unsuccessful talks with leading EU officials.
When asked how the negotiations went, Sikorski retorted curtly: Login to read more