28 February 2020

Ukraine rocked by leaked audio scandal

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Volodymyr Zelensky has rejected the resignation of his prime minister, who was under pressure after leaked audio seemed to show him criticize the president for his lack of knowledge. Is the premier the victim of a plot? reports citing that the new year in Ukraine has begun in crisis mode. On January 8, the country was in shock following the downing of a Ukraine International Airlines jet over Tehran. And now, the government is facing a crisis.

On Friday, Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk announced he had tendered his resignation, days after leaked audio appeared to show Honcharuk disparage President Volodymyr Zelensky as having a "very primitive" understanding of economics.

Just hours later, Zelensky rejected his premier's resignation over the "unpleasant" tape situation. "I've thought about it," Zelensky said in a video released by his office, "and it seems to me that it would be proper to give you and your government a chance."

At issue is a leaked audio recording of a meeting of a small group of government officials, at which Honcharuk and several ministers were present. In the six-minute recording, they talk about, among other things, the problems associated with the unexpectedly rapid recovery of the national currency, the hryvnia.

In the conversation, Honcharuk appears to say Zelensky doesn't understand much about the economy — though he also apparently describes his own limited understanding as well.

2020.01.18 / 14:57
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