Washington disappointed by results of Dutch Referendum - US State Department

8.04.2016 р., 11:00

“We’re disappointed by the results, but we do respect the views of the Dutch people and we respect the Dutch political process,” Toner said at a press briefing in Washington. As we have reported, the Netherlands held an advisory referendum on the matter of ratification of the association agreement between the European Union and Ukraine. Reports said the preliminary results were more than 61 percent against the ratification, with voter turnout at 32 percent – over the 30% minimum needed for the vote to be valid. Official results will be announced April 12th. The deputy spokesman also noted that the Dutch government should decide on further steps in this issue and the United States would respect this process. At the same time, according to Toner, the United States “believes this association agreement is in the best interests of Ukraine, the US, and the European Union,” and the country still stands by this position. He said the Ukrainian people should have the right to pursue closer ties with the West if it wants to have stronger economic ties and stronger democratic institutions. That’s its own sovereign right,” Toner said, and neither Russia, nor the United States should influence this process. The deputy spokesman of the State Department also reiterated the words of Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko that Ukraine continues the work towards an association agreement, and takes the steps needed in terms of reforms and other measures. “We support [Ukrainians] in those efforts,” Toner said. He also added that the agreement had been already ratified by all other members of the EU, so “there is support for this document”.

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