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U.S. Embassy: Oligarchs Call MPs and Judges, Kremlin’s Narratives Circulate in Media

Kristina A. Kvien

In Ukraine, “oligarchs call judges” and “Russia’s allies sit in the Verkhovna Rada,” Chargé d’Affaires ad interim at the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine Kristina Kvien said at “The Dialogues About Reforms: on the Road to Vilnius” forum, which began in Kyiv on 17 November with the participation of representatives of the Cabinet, the President’s Office, embassies and the Verkhovna Rada.

“We now see two important challenges concerning Euro-Atlantic integration. It is very important that Ukraine overcomes them, otherwise, it will not be able to show achievements in integration. Today, Ukraine is fighting against Russian aggression on many fronts. The annexation of Crimea, the war in Donbas. This includes cyberattacks and misinformation spreading from the territory of the Russian Federation, as well as through Russia’s allies, who are also sitting in the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. Similarly, there are internal challenges in regards to the fight against corruption. It is important that these two challenges are overcome simultaneously, and it is important to resist misinformation,” the diplomat said.

She also stated that President Zelensky came to power promising to strengthen the fight against corruption and improve the work of the Government so that Ukrainians could feel it.

“He has achieved some success: the abolition of parliamentary immunity, [launch of] banking and land reforms. But as we know, when the rule of law reform intensified against privileges and money, personal interest, this personal interest began to resist. This is exactly what we see in Ukraine today. The oligarchs continue to call MPs, judges, and others to undermine the President’s agenda and make the system work in their favour,” Kvien said.

According to the U.S. Chargé d’Affaires, Ukraine’s Western partners see attempts by Russia’s allies to undermine the pro-European narrative and form an anti-Western narrative. This is done through media holdings and social networks.

At the same time, the international community continues to support Ukraine and, in particular, the goals facing the Ukrainian Government and Ukrainian citizens.

U.S. administration plans to continue working with President Zelensky on the path towards Euro-Atlantic integration, Kvien added.

Bohdan Marusyak

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