US Vice President Joe Biden, who is seeking candidacy in the next presidential election, is in a deuced mess. More than five years ago, when Petro Poroshenko took up the post of president in Kiev, Biden sought to get part of the country's business by any means. Today, when his activities have become public, he may lose the chance to run for US President in 2020. Former Prosecutor General of Ukraine Viktor Shokin revealed the details of a history associated with the Burisma Holdings company, with Joe Biden's son Hunter being part of the Board.
"My guess is that Burisma, linked to gas production, enjoyed US support in the person of Joe Biden because his son was on the Board," Shokin believes.
It is worth reminding that July this year saw BuzzFeed and Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) release a joint investigation. It stated that Viktor Shokin and Yuri Lutsenko offered information to US President Donald Trump's lawyer that could help his team in conducting an awareness-raising campaign against his likely opponent Joe Biden.
Journalists referred to the testimony of Lev Parnas, an emigrant from the former USSR, who claimed to have mediated between US presidential lawyer Rudolf Giuliani on the one hand and Yuri Lutsenko and Viktor Shokin on the other along with his friend Igor Fruman.
Today, one of the US Democratic party's pillars is accused of direct interference in Ukrainian politics and alleged corruption. He is said to have been caught blatantly lobbying business interests of former ecology minister Nikolay Zlochevsky. He certainly had his interest here – the ex-minister helped Hunter Biden, former Polish President Aleksander Kwasniewski and Devon Archer, a close friend of former US Secretary of State John Kerry's stepson, to make it into Burisma's Board of Directors. Now Joe Biden is accused of abusing power and blackmailing the Ukrainian authorities by rejecting loans if Ukraine fails to terminate criminal proceedings against Zlochevsky.
According to Hunter Biden, all the claims are groundless, being innuendoes of his father's opponents used for political ends to discredit him.
Today, American journalists are also actively engaged in dealing with this narrative. Columnist of the Hill political website John Solomon refers in his article to the document, which, according to him, is Shokin's sworn testimony to the Austrian court in the case of businessman Dmitry Firtash.
The document reads that the former President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko repeatedly appealed to Shokin for finding ways to drop the inquiry against Burisma, but was rebuffed. According to the former Prosecutor General, after that Poroshenko told him that Biden would stop aiding Ukraine in the amount of $1 billion, and demanded his resignation. Shokin said he was forced out of his seat because of his anti-graft probe against the oil company's top officials.
The document implies that Biden, as well as Poroshenko, Avakov and other Ukrainian officials, have prevented Firtash's return to the country, since this would avert Ukraine's handing him over to the USA. However, Shokin had no convincing evidence of Firtash's criminal activity involvement.
The former Prosecutor General signed the document in front of a notary public who confirmed his identity.
The information provided by Shokin is well positioned to spell significant trouble for Joe Biden. The current White house owner is well aware of his chance to get rid of a key election rival long before the vote. Trump will undoubtedly bend every effort to discredit his opponent. Investigation into the activities of Burisma and Biden's family will be continued by Ruslan Ryaboshapka, the present-day head of the Prosecutor-General's Office of Ukraine. Upon the information provided by some sources, following his talks with Trump, Zelensky instructed to check the information his American counterpart told him about.
"It is definite that up to a point Washington will tolerate Kiev's antics, both the Republicans and the Democrats," expert with the International Institute for Humanitarian and Political Studies Vladimir Bruter said in an interview with the Inforos portal. "Given Zelensky's rating and Ukraine's domestic situation, it is not profitable for the US to play against him, although now he will unlikely get any bonuses. The fact that the President of Ukraine's involvement in a rumble between the Republicans and the Democrats is surely bad but not fatal for him, because he is not a subject," - Bruter said.
The expert is convinced that within the given scenario, despite the contradictions between Kiev and the West, there will be no sanctions against Ukraine, because the latter is needed as an expendable material, but Zelensky will fail to get a certain status or agency.