Thursday

19th Oct 2017

Germany: IMF 'central' to Ukraine aid package

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) should be "central" to the financial rescue package being cobbled together for Ukraine, a German government spokeswoman said on Friday in Berlin (28 February).

She added that German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble has phoned his Russian counterpart, Anton Siluanov, to discuss the bailout after the Kremlin late on Thursday said it wants to be involved.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

Schaeuble also phoned IMF chief Christine Lagarde and EU economics commissioner Olli Rehn, who are sending senior officials to Kiev next week.

The German spokeswoman declined to confirm a figure.

But Germany’s Der Spiegel reports the emergency aid will be around €4 billion, while Rehn has said the EU institutions will boost their previous pledge of macro-financial assistance from €610 million to €1 billion and that the rest will come from IMF and bilateral loans.

This is close to the sum that Ukraine's new leadership has asked for to cover the country's immediate financial needs.

Meanwhile, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called Ukraine’s new interim Prime Minister, Arsenyi Yatesenuk, to congratulate him on winning parliamentary support on Thursday.

Merkel also voiced concerns about Ukraine’s territorial integrity, amid rising tensions in the ethnic Russian-dominated Crimea.

Armed men took control of two airports in the region on Friday in what Ukraine's new leaders described as an invasion and occupation by Russian forces.

Merkel’s call to Yatesenuk cements EU and US recognition of the new authorities, despite Russia’s view they seized power illegitmately.

But the German government spokeswoman noted that Yatsenyuk’s team must be a "transition government” only and that early elections must be held. They are scheduled for 25 May.

The German foreign ministry also urged Yatsenyuk to take measures against far-right and anti-Semitic elements on the streets of Kiev, describing reports of their increased activities as a matter of "great concern.”

For his part, the ousted Ukrainian leader, Viktor Yanukovych, on Friday held a press conference in Rostov-on-Don, Russia.

He claimed he had to leave Kiev due to threats and said he is ready to go back to Ukraine if his safety is ensured.

The German government spokeswoman avoided a clear answer on what Berlin thinks of his legitimacy. "It is up to the Ukrainian people to decide on its rulers," she said.

Yanukovych is currently a wanted man in Ukraine for his role in the deaths of dozens of protesters in recent weeks.

The EU is also considering imposing a visa ban and asset freeze on between eight and 11 Yanukovych officials deemed guilty of human rights abuses.

Switzerland has taken the lead in terms of European sanctions so far.

It froze the assets of 20 regime members on Thursday and named and shamed them on Friday, giving an indication of who might make the EU blacklist.

It named Yanukovych himself and his older son, Oleksander.

It included 10 former Yanukovych governent ministers: Serhiy Arbuzov; Mykola Azarov; Raisa Bohatyryova; Oleksander Klymenko; Yuri Kolobov; Volodymyr Kozak; Olena Lukash; Mykola Prysyazhnyuk; Eduard Stavytsky; and Vitaly Zakharchenko.

It also named Yanukovych’s former chief of staff, Andriy Klyuev, his brother Serhiy, who “owned” Yanukovych’s private mansion, and the former prosecutor general, Viktor Pshonka.

Austria, where Azarov, for one, has real estate, and offshore banking centre Liechtenstein took similar measures on Friday.

A spokesman for the German finance ministry said such a move "is possible" in Germany as well, but declined to give details.

Nepal units arrive in Libya to guard UN refugee agency

The UN is sending guards to Libya to provide security for staff working with the UN refugee agency and other UN missions inside compound premises in Tripoli. The agency's work in Libya is broadly funded by the EU.

News in Brief

  1. Austrian PM calls Brexit talks speed 'big disappointment'
  2. PM Muscat: journalist murder 'left a mark' on Malta
  3. Belgian PM: No crisis with Spain over Catalan remarks
  4. Ireland PM: Further Brexit concessions needed from UK
  5. Merkel: rule of law in Turkey going 'in wrong direction'
  6. Finnish PM: EU 'frustrated' with slow Brexit talks
  7. Dutch PM: Catalan crisis is not a European issue
  8. May 'urgently' wants to see a deal on citizens' rights

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. European Jewish CongressEJC Applauds the Bulgarian Government for Adopting the Working Definition of Antisemitism
  2. EU2017EENorth Korea Leaves Europe No Choice, Says Estonian Foreign Minister Sven Mikser
  3. Mission of China to the EUZhang Ming Appointed New Ambassador of the Mission of China to the EU
  4. International Partnership for Human RightsEU Should Seek Concrete Commitments From Azerbaijan at Human Rights Dialogue
  5. European Jewish CongressEJC Calls for New Austrian Government to Exclude Extremist Freedom Party
  6. CES - Silicones EuropeIn Healthcare, Silicones Are the Frontrunner. And That's a Good Thing!
  7. EU2017EEEuropean Space Week 2017 in Tallinn from November 3-9. Register Now!
  8. European Entrepreneurs CEA-PMEMobiliseSME Exchange Programme Open Doors for 400 Companies Across Europe
  9. CECEE-Privacy Regulation – Hands off M2M Communication!
  10. ILGA-EuropeHealth4LGBTI: Reducing Health Inequalities Experienced by LGBTI People
  11. EU2017EEEHealth: A Tool for More Equal Health
  12. Mission of China to the EUChina-EU Tourism a Key Driver for Job Creation and Enhanced Competitiveness