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11 Jan, 2024 22:15

Ex-Ukrainian MP's corruption claims against Joe Biden: Key takeaways

Those in power Kiev and Washington effectively function as an “organized crime ring,” Andrey Derkach has claimed
Ex-Ukrainian MP's corruption claims against Joe Biden: Key takeaways

Ukraine has been plagued by high-profile corruption, which is being actively covered up by top US officials, former Ukrainian MP Andrey Derkach claimed in an interview with Italian-US journalist Simona Mangiante published on Wednesday.

A veteran Ukrainian politician, Derkach came to international attention in 2020 when he published what he claimed to be recordings of conversations in 2015 and 2016 between then-US Vice President Joe Biden and then-Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko. Among other things, the two discussed firing Ukraine’s prosecutor general, Viktor Shokin.

The latter ended up sacked while probing alleged corruption involving the Biden family, namely the gas firm Burisma, which infamously retained Joe Biden’s son Hunter on a well-paid board position during his tenure as President Barack Obama’s VP.

Top US officials cover up Ukrainian corruption

The corruption in Ukraine has been covered up by top US officials, who have been deeply involved with both the current and former Ukrainian leadership, Derkach claims. He believes that top officials from both countries have effectively formed a criminal syndicate with no way out for any of them.

“They’re all using each other in that organized crime ring. They all deceive each other, use each other, blackmail each other. But most importantly, they’re all afraid of accountability. And while there is talk about ‘who is the criminal?’ it is clear to the US that the criminal is Biden,” Derkach stated.

The politician said the Republican-led effort to impeach the US president must involve charges for facilitating corruption in Kiev, stressing that this was motivated not by bringing down Biden but rather by a desire to fix the situation in his home country somehow.

“What’s important to me in the congressional investigation is not to bring Biden in for influence peddling. It is important for me that the final document of the Congress says that the money stolen from my fellow Ukrainians … was laundered and given to the vice president of the United States, Biden,” he stressed.

Political assassinations?

Derkach also suggested that those involved with the derailed investigation into the Burisma affair are in grave danger, with ex-prosecutor Shokin among the prime targets.

“Shokin is now a hostage on Ukrainian territory. As far as I know, they do not let him out of Ukraine. He is under the total control of the Security Service of Ukraine and is the subject of bargaining between Biden and Blinken on the one hand and Zelensky and Yermak on the other,” he said, referring to Zelensky’s chief-of-staff, Andrey Yermak.

Derkach claimed he himself was a target for political assassination but said that he has managed to evade attempts so far, ultimately leaving the country. With these plans failing, he was then targeted by a bogus criminal case instead, he claims.

The ex-MP now believes US Secretary of State Antony Blinken might have been directly involved in the affair and that he decided to “resolve my issue in a non-legal way.”

Derkach claimed that at a meeting in Kiev in January 2022, Blinken ordered Zelensky to “solve the Derkach issue urgently” and warned that if it was not solved, “we will solve it ourselves with our partners.”

Blinken should “put his hand on the Torah or the Bible and say that he did not say that,” Derkach said.

Multi-million bribes

The Burisma affair has also seen “the largest cash bribe in Europe,” Derkach said, referencing the company’s owner Nikolay Zlochevsky, who was accused in 2020 of sending $6 million in cash to people investigating him in exchange for closing the case.

Derkach said that the infamous $6 million cash bribe was only one part of the package, with the whole sum totaling $50 million.

Zlochevsky faced no consequences for the bribe, with “one of Soros’ publications, Ukrainska Pravda,” publishing by “accident” a closed-door court ruling on the matter, the ex-MP noted. The verdict showed that Zlochevsky received a 64-68,000 hryvnias fine.

“To make it clear to you: For a bribe of $6 million, he received a fine of $1,800,” he said.

Slush funds to bankroll terrorism?

The cash of questionable origins has been lavishly poured into the Ukrainian war effort, with Zlochevsky himself paying “800 million hryvnias [over $21 million] for terrorism financing” in “various jurisdictions,” Derkach claimed.

Such ‘donations’ are also a form of bribe, with those making them effectively buying personal impunity while fuelling the conflict between Ukraine and Russia, he said.

“The leaders of Ukraine’s security services make no secret of the fact that they carry out terrorist acts and political assassinations for extra-budgetary cash. Once again: Biden’s partners in the corruption business in Ukraine finance terrorist acts, thus avoiding responsibility for corruption in Ukraine,” Derkach stated.

The slush funds at least partially ended up in the hands of the Ukrainian military intelligence, the GUR, which has used it to bankroll high-profile assassinations of public figures in Russia, as well as to participate in the attack on the Nord Stream pipelines to provide a cover-up for it, the politician asserted.