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Ukrainian parliament refuses to investigate Panama Papers offshore scandal

June 01, 2016, 15:21 UTC+3 KIEV

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko was involved in the scandal that followed the leaks from the Panamanian company Mossack Fonseca

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Reporters at the Ukrainian parliament

Reporters at the Ukrainian parliament

© Nikolay Lazarenko/TASS

KIEV, June 1 /TASS/. Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada (parliament) has refused to support the creation of a temporary commission to investigate an offshore scandal, which involved, among others, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko. Only 108 deputies out of the necessary 226 voted for the draft resolution proposed by Radical Party’s leader Oleg Lyashko.

"The draft has been turned down," Parliamentary Speaker Andrei Parubiy said after the vote.

The draft resolution suggests creating a temporary commission to investigate if President Poroshenko, Head of Ukraine’s National Bank Natalya Gontareva; Finance Minister Alexander Danilyuk and other senior Ukrainian officials own any offshore companies.

The radicals had sought the vote on the resolution for three weeks. All that time they had blocked Verkhovna Rada’s rostrum.

Earlier, Lyashko asked President Poroshenko not to obstruct the creation of a commission to investigate offshores, power abuse and corruption. The radicals continued blocking the rostrum after the failed vote.

According to a report (the Panama Papers) of the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) based on information leaks from the Panamanian company Mossack Fonseca, Poroshenko has not yet handed over the assets of his confectionary corporation Roshen to a trust but has created an offshore company for their restructuring. Mossack Fonseca renders legal assistance in the registration of offshore companies. The president’s financial advisers denied the allegations.

The size of funds of Ukrainian origin that sink in offshore zones range between $117 billion to $167 billion, according to various international estimates.

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