Washington, D.C., May 1, 2007 - Ukrainian Foreign Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk told VOA during a live television interview that discussions during his trip to Washington are focusing on expanding U.S.-Ukrainian cooperation, including in the energy sector.
"The United States provided exceptional support of Ukraine's aspirations for integrating into the [global] economic community," said Foreign Minister Yatseniuk during the live interview on VOA's daily Ukrainian-language program Chas-Time.
When asked about the current "political crisis" in Ukraine, in which the President has disbanded Parliament and called for new parliamentary elections, Yatseniuk told VOA's Ukrainian audience that it was not a crisis but rather a "process of political transformation of Ukrainian society." He said, "It's what is known as democracy."
"Chas-Time is very popular in Ukraine," said VOA Director Dan Austin. "We are glad that we were able to offer Foreign Minister Yatseniuk an opportunity to talk directly to our audience in Ukraine."
The Ukrainian Foreign Minister also expressed gratitude for U.S. support for the development of democracy in Ukraine and for some $3 billion in assistance since Ukrainians declared independence in 1991. He added that he anticipates continued U.S. assistance in several areas, including fighting corruption and stemming the spread of HIV-AIDS.
While in Washington, Foreign Minister Yatseniuk will meet with U.S. government and Congressional officials.
VOA's Ukrainian Service broadcasts more than three hours of television each week, including Chas-Time and Window on America, and five hours on radio weekly. The Service's Internet site is www.voanews.com/ukrainian/
The Voice of America, which first went on the air in 1942, is a multimedia international broadcasting service funded by the U.S. government through the Broadcasting Board of Governors. VOA broadcasts more than 1,000 hours of news, information, educational, and cultural programming every week to an estimated worldwide audience of more than 115 million people. Programs are produced in 45 languages.
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