"Foreign and Commonwealth Office
King Charles Street
08 February 2011
Thank you for your e-mail of 29 December to the Foreign Secretary, William Hague, concerning Ukraine. I have been asked to reply.
Together with the EU and international partners, we have raised our concerns about the development of democracy in Ukraine directly with the Government of Ukraine. Foremost among our concerns are the conduct of local elections held in October 2010 and the weakening of media freedom. Most recently, we have become concerned with the manner in which the Rule of Law is being applied.
Ukraine has recognized the necessity for judicial reform and President Yanukovych has publicly called for the combating of corruption in Ukrainian institutions. We actively support this. However, we have pointed out that corruption cannot be fought with selective application of the law - a situation which not only has an impact on the political climate but on future economic growth as well. An independent judiciary to ensure equal treatment under the law and advance justice in a predictable and fair way is imperative to further economic growth.
Until recently, the development of Ukraine into the most democratic country in the CIS bolstered Ukraine’s reputation - and that of its leaders - and helped to promote relations with key international partners. Ukraine has a stated aim to achieve full membership of the European Union. We have made clear that this can only be achieved by a truly democratic Ukraine.
Our bilateral relations with Ukraine are based on the principles of democratic and economic freedom, the rule of law and respect for human rights. We are committed to the strengthening of cooperation between the UK and Ukraine. And we are prepared to support Ukraine as it faces the challenges of protecting and developing these fundamental principles.
Deputy Head of Section
Ukraine & Belarus Desk Officer
Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova & Neighbourhood Policy Team
Eastern Europe and Central Asia Directorate"
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