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Putin Says Russia Will Wait To Fulfill Ukrainian Aid Deals

Russian President Vladimir Putin (left) with Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych in Moscow's Grand Kremlin Palace in mid-December
President Vladimir Putin has ordered the Russian government to wait until a new Ukrainian government is formed before fulfilling Moscow's agreement to provide a $15 billion economic rescue package to Kyiv.

Putin emphasized, however, that Russia still intends to honor its loan pledges and gas-discount deals to Ukraine.

Under its loan pledge, Russia has already invested $3 billion in Ukrainian eurobonds to help ease Ukraine's debt crisis.

On January 28, Putin suggested during a European Union summit in Brussels that Russia would not review the loan agreement even if Ukrainian opposition figures came to power in a new government.

The government of Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov resigned later the same day, following weeks of mass protests against a decision to reject EU cooperation agreements and instead pursue strengthened ties with Russia.

Based on reporting by AFP, Reuters, and Interfax