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EU hopes to settle issues around association deal with Ukraine by mid-December

A compromise has to be found before the European Council summit.

The European Union hopes to reach a compromise on the association agreement with Ukraine before the European Council meets for a summit in Brussels on 15-16 December, the head of the EU Delegation to Ukraine, Hugh Mingarelli, told Ukrainian News on 6 December.

"The leaders of the European Union would like to settle [the issues] before the summit of the European Council in Brussels on 15 December. Some compromise has to be found by that time," Mingarelli said.

Mingarelli suggested an additional protocol may be signed for the ratification of the agreement on the EU-Ukraine association.

"The institutions of the European Union are in talks with the authorities of the Netherlands. They are trying to find solutions that will enable the prime minister of the Netherlands to secure the support of the parliament without infringing on the interests of Ukraine. I would not rule out that an additional protocol to the association agreement will have to be signed," Mingarelli said.

He stressed that the content of the agreement should by no means be changed.

The Netherlands remains the last EU country to complete the ratification of the association agreement. At a consultative referendum on 6 April, 61 per cent of Dutch voters who came to polling stations voted against the EU-Ukraine association agreement. The turnout was 32 per cent at 30 per cent required. The results of the referendum are not binding on the government.

Currently, the agreement is being applied provisionally.