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KIEV, March 23. /TASS/. Four deputies from the central Dnipropetrovsk region have quit the Petro Poroshenko Bloc faction seeking to create a separate deputy group in the parliament, Mirror Weekly edition reports on Monday, citing a conflict between the president and Dnipropetrovsk Region governor Igor Kolomoisky as the reason.
One of the deputies, Andrey Denisenko, told a news conference in Dnipropetrovsk that regional leadership was being discredited. Alexander Dubinin, for his part, said "somebody is eager to cause trouble between Poroshenko and Kolomoisky" "I believe the president will get things straight, will assume personal control and will give assessment to the developments under way," he said.
Vitaly Kupriy said he was quitting as he did not agree with the policy of the president. "Under such circumstances I have to quit the faction of the Pyotr Poroshenko Bloc in Verkhovna Rada," he wrote in Facebook, urgying all faction deputies sharing his opinion to follow suit and to set up a separate deputy group to translate into life election program promises.
On March 19, Ukrtransnafta’s (owned by Kolomoisky) supervisory board dismissed Kolomoisky’s protege Alexander Lazorko from the post of the company’s board head and appointed Yuri Miroshnik acting chairman of the board.
Later reports said that the building of the oil company was seized by "gunmen led by Kolomoisky." However, Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said that Kiev’s law enforcement agencies took Uktransnafta’s premises under control.
According to media reports, in April-May 2014 Ukrtransnafta pumped 675,000 tons of process oil from the county’s trunk pipelines without permission of the Ukrainian Ministry of Energy and Coal Mining. Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk demanded then that the law enforcement agencies initiate criminal proceedings and prosecute those responsible for illegal siphoning off of oil.
On Monday, media reported that armed volunteer battalions were pulling in to Kiev.
"Yesterday, soldiers of a number of battalions were pulled out from the front and are heading for Kiev with arms. There is no information about the purpose of this move," Vesti said, adding that it might be linked "with the situation around Kolomoisky."
Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko said earlier on Monday that none of the Ukrainian governors will be allowed to have "private armies" any longer.
Ukrainian Security Service Chief Valentin Nalivaichenko said earlier that some high-placed officials in the Dnepropetrovsk regional administration maintained armed formations that were actually bandit groupings.
The topic of armed groupings in Ukraine has surfaced after armed men from a security company presumably related to Kolomoisky placed the building of Ukrnafta state-owned oil and gas extracting company "under their guard.".