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Ukraine, EU Sign Cooperation Plan

Yushchenko will attend the NATO summit in Brussels on 22 February (file photo) 21 February 2005 -- Ukraine has signed an economic and political cooperation plan with the European Union.

The document was initialed in Brussels today on the eve of Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko's summit meeting with NATO leaders. Yushchenko is also scheduled to meet with U.S. President George W. Bush tomorrow.

The Ukraine-EU plan pledges to fight corruption and organized crime and to strengthen democracy in line with European standards.

Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Oleg Rybachuk said he accepts that the EU is not yet ready to consider his country's membership. But he said his country wants concrete measures this year to open up trade and ease EU visa restrictions.