President Viktor Yushchenko renewed on Wednesday his appeal for a "drastic review" of a 10-year natural gas contract with Russia, which ended the ex-Soviet states' latest pricing and debt row.
"The Yalta agreements represent sarcasm and irony at the expense of Ukraine's economy," Yushchenko said in televised remarks in the eastern Sumy region. "We will survive a few months, but they are only an opportunity to prepare for new talks."
Ukraine's Naftogaz and Russia's Gazprom signed the deal in January, ending the New Year dispute which caused losses for industries and left households in Europe without heating amid freezing temperatures.
The pact agreed on by the two countries' premiers stipulates that Kiev start paying European-level prices for Russian gas in 2010, ending discounts enjoyed by the country.
The two sides later signed an addendum to the contract where Moscow agreed to supply 35% less than the contracted gas volume to Ukraine, agreeing not to fine the country, which has been hard-hit by the global recession.
Yushchenko again blamed his ally-turned-foe Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko for betraying the national interest.
He said the deal was designed to bankrupt troubled national energy firm Naftogaz. "Getting hold of the asset was the prime minister's key political objective," he said.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said on Wednesday he was categorically against any review of gas agreements with Ukraine. "I regard the proposal to review these agreements as totally irresponsible," he said.
Ukrainian officials vowed to ensure uninterrupted gas transit at a summit with the European Union last week.
Naftogaz, which has made its monthly gas payments to Russia on time this year, moved to give further assurances on Wednesday that no new gas crisis with Russia is looming. The company also criticized Ukrainian authorities for "destabilizing" statements.
Ukraine transits about 80% of Russian gas bound for the EU, which buys one-fifth of its gas from Russia.
KIEV, December 9 (RIA Novosti)