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MEPs call for EU to stand by Ukraine

MEPs call for EU to stand by Ukraine
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Some MEPs are saying the EU should step in and provide aid to Ukraine with the country still reeling from the recent political turmoil.

Kiev says it needs some 25 billion euros over the next two years, or it will face economic collapse.

“It would be a totally wrong message to anybody in such a situation, after such harm was done by this dictatorship against its own people that we now do not support this country,” said Elmar Brok, a member of Germany’s centre-right Christian Democrats.

“It is crucial for us to support them,” added Ana Gomes, a Socialist lawmaker from Portugal. “And not allow anyone – namely Mr. Putin – to export to Ukraine his model at the service of oligarchs. “

The European Commission had said on Monday that it would wait until after Ukraine’s May 25 elections before opening talks on a rescue package.

But the EU’s top economic official said on Tuesday that he backed the idea of a donors’ conference for the country.

It would “allow for member states resources and other European countries to put together a substantial aid package for Ukraine,” EU Economic Commissioner Olli Rehn told reporters in Strasbourg.

IMF officials have echoed the EU line, saying Ukraine will have to wait until a permanent government is formed before negotiations on financial assistance can begin.