MOSCOW / KIEV, Sep 29 (Reuters / EP) –
Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov believes that his country's authorities should investigate the son of US presidential candidate Joe Biden to determine if his role in a Ukrainian gas company complied with the laws of the country.
The role of Hunter Biden in the company, Burisma Holdings Limited, is in the spotlight after the controversial call of the president of the United States, Donald Trump, to his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodimir Zelenski, in which the US president asked the Ukrainian to do “everything possible” for the Attorney General to investigate the son of former US Vice President Joe Biden.
“It is a fact and has not been invented. It must be investigated,” Azarov said during an interview with the Reuters news agency. The National Anti-Corruption Agency of Ukraine reported Friday that it is investigating the activity of the Burisma company, but has made it clear that its inquiries focus on a period, from 2010 to 2012, in which the American lawyer was not on the payroll of the gas company
Trump's controversial call to Zelenski has caused the Democrats to launch the procedure to initiate a parliamentary impeachment process (impeachment, in English) against Trump for considering that he acted irregularly taking advantage of his position to gain advantage in the next elections Presidential
Hunter Biden was director of the Burisma board of directors from 2014 until at least 2018, according to the documents presented by the company in Cyprus, where he is registered.
Azarov, who was prime minister between 2010 and 2014, is claimed by the Ukrainian authorities for alleged abuse of power. In an Interpol notification published in 2015 at the request of the Ukrainian authorities, he was sought for accusations of misappropriation of funds and misappropriation.
However, Azarov denies having done something wrong and added that “he has no proof” that Hunter Biden has committed illegal acts, but even so, it is in the public interest to determine the legality of his activities. In particular, he insisted that it was important to investigate what Biden had done in Burisma to justify his salary at this company.
“If using his knowledge, he played an active role, then there is nothing scandalous about it,” said Azarov. “But if it was simply in the books and he got money, then that could be seen as a violation of the law,” he said in Moscow, where he fled after protests that overthrew President Viktor Yanukovich in 2014.
Ukrainian prosecutors have explained that while they are not investigating Hunter Biden, they are analyzing the legality of Burisma's activities before Biden joined his board of directors. Burisma has faced several charges for evading taxes and improperly obtaining licenses for gas deposits.
Azarov has said he believes it is “absolute nonsense,” but still the accusations of Trump's lawyer Rudy Giuliani that Joe Biden had fired the Ukrainian attorney general to protect his son Hunter should also be investigated.