Ukraine’s new President Viktor Yanukovich says he will carry out a foreign policy aimed at reaping the best results for his country. The 59-year-old spoke after he was sworn-in at a ceremony in Kiev.
The former prime minister was elected in a run-off vote against Yulia Tymoshenko, the current Prime Minister, earlier in February. But she refuses to recognise his presidency, denouncing his victory as fraudulent.
Tymoshenko has called Yanukovich a pawn of oligarchs who will establish an anti-Ukrainian, anti-European dictatorship. In his first speech, the President rejected these concerns.
“Ukraine will choose such a foreign policy that will allow the state to get the maximum results from the development of equal and mutually advantageous relations with Russia, the European Union, the United States and other governments,” he said.
Yanukovich is to visit Brussels on Monday, before attempting any trip to Moscow, apparently to show he is in favour of developing ties with Europe.
Still analysts expect him to eventually manoeuvre his country back into line with its old Soviet master, Russia.