Updated at 11:25,18-04-2018

Milinkevich: Russia working to counter EU influence in Eastern Partnership countries


Russia has spent much money on efforts to counter the European Union`s influence in the six countries involved in the 27-nation bloc`s EaP program, former presidential candidate said at the European People`s Party (EPP)`s summit in Brussels on March 14.

The leader of the Movement for Freedom said that Russia`s growing influence was the main reason for little progress achieved by the EU program, according to the opposition organization`s press office.

"Russian money starts successfully privatizing power on the ex-Soviet territory and even influence political process in the new EU member states," said Mr. Milinkevich.

The politician urged the EU to review its policy toward eastern neighbors. "A new strategy should be developed and implemented for the sake of expanding democracy and stability in the continent," he said, adding that the geopolitical situation "is changing for the worse."

"The European Union needs a profound strategy of specific actions rather than rhetoric, joint actions rather than words about feelings," said Mr. Milinkevich.

He explained that EU countries` strategies were often inconsistent with each other, while Russia had a single, clear strategy of preventing ex-Soviet countries from adopting European values and democratizing.

Mr. Milinkevich called for the EU to be patient and not forgo its efforts to seek closer ties with the Eastern Partnership countries.