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Georgia's ex-president Saakashvili seeks to become Ukraine’s anti-corruption chief

February 02, 2015, 14:01 UTC+3 KIEV
Saakashvili said corruption is one of Ukraine's main enemies, and he could introduce an action plan based on Georgia’s experience in the fight against corruption
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Mikheil Saakashvili

Mikheil Saakashvili

© ITAR-TASS/Sergei Karpov

KIEV, February 2. /TASS/. Former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili confirmed on Monday that he is ready to fight for the post of Ukraine’s national anti-corruption bureau chief.

In an interview with the Censor.net news portal, Saakashvili said corruption is one of the main enemies of Ukraine and he could introduce an action plan based on Georgia’s experience of fighting against corruption.

Saakashvili said he could use his international ties to focus on the issues of returning to Ukraine the arrested assets of a corrupt group linked to former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.

Ukraine’s media reports say another candidate for the post of the country’s newly created bureau is a former US federal prosecutor Bohdan Vitvitsky, who has Ukrainian roots.

Officials from the Ukrainian presidential administration have been in talks with Vitvitsky, who reportedly has not made a final decision yet saying that he "still has no guarantees that the position is independent."

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in October last year signed a package of anti-corruption laws, including on creating the National Anti-Corruption Bureau. The agency is charged with exposing, preventing and investigating corruption cases in the country.

Poroshenko also suggested that a foreigner could lead the newly-created agency.

Ukraine’s Opposition Bloc and Yulia Tymoshenko’s Batkivshchyna party are against the work of foreigners in the Ukrainian government, saying that Kiev wants to absolve itself of the responsibility for what is happening in the country.

Saakashvili was the president of Georgia for two consecutive terms from January 2004 to November 2013. In his home country, Saakashvili is accused of embezzling state funds. In September, the property of the ex-president and his family members was arrested. Saakashvili’s personal bank accounts in Georgia were also arrested.

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