Anti-corruption watchdog urges US to sanction Ukraine’s Deputy Presidential Chief-of-Staff

20 December 2021, 02:53 PM

The Anti-Corruption Action Center, or AntAC, a Ukrainian watchdog organization, will urge the United States to impose visa sanctions against Oleg Tatarov, a deputy chief-of-staff of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, the organization said on its website on Dec. 20.

AntAC’s said Tatarov was responsible for the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office (SAP) being without a head for over a year.

Tatarov de-facto controls Parliament’s delegates to the (appointing) commission, who routinely derail meetings of the commission and block designating the winner (of the competition to lead the SAP),” AntAC’s statement reads.

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AntAC’s appeal to the U.S. government will include detailed references to Tatarov’s tenure at the Interior Ministry under the fugitive former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, and his characterizations of the EuroMaidan revolution (the protests against Yanukovych’s regime in Dec. 2013 – Feb. 2014).

Tatarov’s “close ties to (pro-Russian politician) Andriy Portnov (the U.S. Treasury Department imposed sanctions on Portnov earlier this month), his corruption scandal, his anti-western rhetoric and attacks on our anti-corruption infrastructure,” will all be included in AntAC’s petition, the organization said.

Under its #VisaBanKremlinAgents initiative, AntAC gathers data on the assets of Ukrainian officials they suspect of corruption, as well as pro-Kremlin government actors, and then petitions the European Union, the United States, the United Kingdom and Switzerland to impose visa and other kinds of sanctions against the implicated individuals.

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