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Ukraine’s anti-corruption agency could be led by US citizen — media

Another candidate for the top post is former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, reports say

KIEV, December 26. /TASS/. A former US federal prosecutor Bohdan Vitvitsky, who has Ukrainian roots, could be appointed as the director of Ukraine’s newly-created Anti-Corruption Bureau, local media reported on Friday.

Officials from the Ukrainian presidential administration are currently in talks with Vitvitsky, who has not yet made a final decision saying that he “still has no guarantees that the position is independent.”

Another candidate for the top post is former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, the reports say. The candidacy has been proposed by a member of a tender commission, Yury Butusov.

The ex-Georgian leader, who is now on the run and has recently failed to receive a US working visa, has not yet taken a decision, saying that he is waiting for “a more specific proposal.”

Saakashvili will have to take Ukraine’s citizenship and in line with an anti-corruption law to settle the issues over closing criminal cases against him in his home country, including on abuse of power.

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

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

Foreigners have been already appointed as ministers in the Ukrainian government. President Poroshenko earlier signed a law on granting Ukrainian citizenship to US national Natalya Yaresko, Lithuanian Aivaras Abromavichus and Georgian Alexander Kvitashvili, who head the country’s finance, health and economic development ministries, respectively.

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.