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06KIEV947, Ukraine: International Anticorruption and

March 13, 2006

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06KIEV947 2006-03-13 09:39 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Kyiv
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.


E.O. 12958: N/A
SUBJECT:  Ukraine:  International Anticorruption and
Good Governance Report 

Ref:  State 30961 

Sensitive but unclassified.  Not for internet distribution.
Please handle accordingly.
1. (SBU) In 2004, the Ukrainian people radically changed
Ukraine's political landscape by standing up for their rights and
successfully demanding that the results of the Presidential
election reflect their will in what was known as the "Orange
Revolution."  In a watershed decision that demonstrated the rule
of law over entrenched, corrupt power, the Supreme Court
invalidated the falsified second round of the voting and called
for a repeat vote.  These events, which have changed the
underlying dynamic between Ukrainian citizens and their
government, created the possibility for advancing the rule of law
and strengthening the fight against corruption.
2. (SBU) The new Ukrainian Government which took power in
February 2005 was the first government dedicated to fighting
corruption.  It faced serious challenges in delivering on the
populace's very high expectations for improvement.  At issue were
a government and economy pervaded with corruption; the task was
not simply to root out discrete pockets of corruption.  Over the
government's first year in office, there have been success
stories.  Empowerment of the Internal Affairs Department within
the Ministry of Interior led to the prosecution and firing of
thousands of corrupt law enforcement officials who had preyed
upon the public.  The "Contraband - STOP" program focused on
rooting out endemic corruption in the customs service.  This
program helped recoup tariff revenues of $424.5 million for the
government coffers in 2005.  By closing loopholes favoring the
well-connected, and by increasing integrity and enforcement
within the State Tax Administration, the government posted 46.8
percent growth in tax revenue over 2004. 

3. (SBU) Public perceptions of corruption, however, improved only
slightly.  A Prosecutor General held over from the previous
regime through October 2005, delays in initiating reforms of the
judicial system, and the absence of a monitoring system underline
the tremendous scale of the problems and the work that remains to
be done to build integrity into state institutions.  Anti-
corruption programs largely are demand-driven in Ukraine; free
media, public awareness, and the high expectations of citizens
have created political demands that corruption be eradicated in
Ukraine.  For the first time in Ukraine's history as an
independent country, a government was dismissed (in September
2005) following public allegations of corruption. 

4. (SBU) In 2005, the USG initiated new programs and expanded
existing programs to help the new government in its anti-
corruption efforts.  In the economic sector, USAID's anti-
corruption programs included land titling, deregulation efforts
including support for "one-stop shops" for business registration,
municipal budget reform, commercial law, and WTO accession
support.  The commercial law program provided drafting support on
key laws including Bankruptcy, Commercial Procedure Code,
Enforcement of Judgments, and Joint Stock Companies. 

5. (SBU) USAID's democracy and good governance programs supported
a series of Parliamentary hearings on anti-corruption, drafted
anti-corruption related legislation, trained NGOs in hearing
procedures and policy analysis, supported multiple NGO watchdog
and advocacy initiatives at the local, regional, and national
level, trained journalists in investigative reporting, launched a
Ukraine-wide anti-corruption information campaign, and promoted
transparency in elections through election commissioner training,
non-partisan voter education, and support for domestic and
international elections observation.  In the health sector, USG
helped increase transparency in policymaking, finance, and
procurement of tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS drugs through the
development of a national policy group and an HIV NGO coalition.
In education, a partnership with the GOU was launched to
implement a comprehensive system of national testing for college
admissions to combat rampant corruption in an area that affects
virtually all families in Ukraine. 

6. (SBU) In the criminal justice and law enforcement spheres,
State/INL initiated programs to strengthen the independence and
transparency of the judiciary and enhance the professional
qualifications of judges and defense attorneys, thus ending the
Soviet legacy of prosecutorial supremacy.  State/INL also
initiated programs to support drafting a new criminal procedure
code, bringing greater transparency to the pre-trial system, and
promoting integrity awareness among midlevel managers and
training staff in both the Customs and Border Guard Services.
The USG has also supported the drafting of a comprehensive
structural reform program for Ukraine's law-enforcement system
along European Union norms, including a comprehensive approach to
prosecuting corruption. 





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