Skip to content

09KYIV1071, RADA COMMITTEE WELCOMES ANTI-CORRUPTION LEGISLATION

June 22, 2009

WikiLeaks Link

To understand the justification used for the classification of each cable, please use this WikiSource article as reference.
Discussing cables
If you find meaningful or important information in a cable, please link directly to its unique reference number. Linking to a specific paragraph in the body of a cable is also possible by copying the appropriate link (to be found at theparagraph symbol).Please mark messages for social networking services like Twitter with the hash tags #cablegate and a hash containing the reference ID e.g. #09KYIV1071.
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09KYIV1071 2009-06-22 13:24 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Kyiv

R 221324Z JUN 09
FM AMEMBASSY KYIV
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 8000
INFO DOJ WASHDC

UNCLAS KYIV 001071 
 
 
STATE FOR INL, EUR/ACE 
DOJ FOR CRIM DAAG BRUCE SWARTZ 
DOJ FOR OPDAT NEWCOMBE AND ALEXANDRE 
USAID FOR A/AA/EE KYAMASHITA, ABREWER, VCHIEN;  USAID/ODP JLANGE 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: PGOV UP
SUBJECT: RADA COMMITTEE WELCOMES ANTI-CORRUPTION LEGISLATION 
 
REF: KYIV 
 
 
SUMMARY 
 
1. (U)  ON JUNE 3, DRAFT BILLS ON PROFESSIONAL ETHICS AND FINANCIAL 
DISCLOSURE BY PUBLIC SERVANTS DEVELOPED THROUGH THE DEPARTMENT OF 
JUSTICE'S MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE CORPORATION (MCC) THRESHOLD COUNTRY 
PROGRAM (TCP) FOR UKRAINE MET WITH AN OVERWHELMINGLY POSITIVE 
RESPONSE IN A HEARING BEFORE THE RADA COMMITTEE ON COMBATING 
ORGANIZED CRIME AND CORRUPTION.  THE LEGISLATION, WHICH WAS 
REGISTERED IN THE RADA BY A MULTI-PARTY COALITION OF RADA DEPUTIES 
ON MAY 14, WAS PRAISED BY MPS AND EXPERTS, INCLUDING DRAGO KOS, THE 
PRESIDENT OF THE GROUP OF STATES AGAINST CORRUPTION (GRECO) OF THE 
COUNCIL OF EUROPE, AND WILLIAM TREANOR, AN ETHICS EXPERT AND DEAN OF 
FORDHAM LAW SCHOOL.  GRECO PRESIDENT KOS DESCRIBED THE DRAFT BILLS 
AS "AMONG THE MOST ADVANCED LAWS HE'[D] EVER SEEN IN HIS LIFE." 
EMBASSY HOPES THAT THIS HEARING WILL HELP THE LEGISLATION TO MOVE 
FORWARD RAPIDLY TOWARD FINAL PASSAGE.  END SUMMARY. 
 
 
THE NEED FOR COMPREHENSIVE LEGISLATION 
 
2.  (U)  UKRAINE'S MCC TCP HAS A SINGLE OBJECTIVE OF REDUCING 
CORRUPTION IN THE PUBLIC SECTOR.  THE $44.9 MILLION TCP WAS APPROVED 
BY THE MCC IN JUNE 2006, AND PROGRAMS WERE LANCHED BEGINNING IN 
DECEMBER 2006.  THE PROGRAM IS CURRENTLY SCHEDULED TO END ON 
SEPTEMBER 30, 2009.  THE TCP FOCUSES ON FIVE PROGRAM AREAS: 
STRENGTHENING CIVIL SOCIETY'S MONITORING AND EXPOSURE OF CORRUPTION, 
INCREASING THE TRANSPARENCY AND EFFECTIVENESS OF JUDICIAL 
INSTITUTIONS, INCREASED GOVERNMENT MONITORING AND ENFORCEMENT OF 
ETHICAL AND FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE STANDARDS, STREAMLINING AND 
ENFORCING GOVERNMENT REGULATIONS, AND COMBATING CORRUPTION IN HIGHER 
EDUCATION ADMISSIONS.  THE UKRAINE TCP IS ADMINISTERED BY THE USAID 
REGIONAL MISSION IN UKRAINE. 
 
3.  (U)  COMPONENT THREE OF THE MCC TCP FOR UKRAINE CALLS FOR THE 
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE'S OFFICE OF OVERSEAS PROSECUTORIAL 
DEVELOPMENT, ASSISTANCE AND TRAINING (DOJ/OPDAT) TO WORK WITH 
COUNTERPARTS WITHIN THE GOVERNMENT OF UKRAINE TO ASSIST IN THE 
DEVELOPMENT OF A COMPREHENSIVE CODE OF PROFESSIONAL ETHICS, 
INCLUDING PROVISIONS DEALING WITH CONFLICTS OF INTEREST, AND THE 
DEVELOPMENT OF A COMPREHENSIVE AND EFFECTIVE SYSTEM OF DISCLOSURE OF 
FINANCIAL AND OUTSIDE INTERESTS BY PUBLIC SERVANTS, WHICH CAN BE 
UTILIZED TO DISCOVER CONFLICTS OF INTEREST AND ILLICIT ENRICHMENT. 
CURRENTLY, UKRAINE HAS NO SUCH COMPREHENSIVE CODE OF PROFESSIONAL 
ETHICS, AND THE INDIVIDUAL CODES THAT EXIST IN INDIVIDUAL MINISTRIES 
AND AGENCIES TEND TO BE LARGELY ASPIRATIONAL, AND LACK CLEAR 
GUIDELINES FOR OFFICIALS' CONDUCT OR SANCTIONS FOR VIOLATION OF 
SAME.  SUCH CODES, AND UKRAINIAN LAW IN GENERAL, ESSENTIALLY LEAVE 
UNADDRESSED CONFLICTS OF INTEREST BETWEEN THE PRIVATE INTERESTS OF 
PUBLIC SERVANTS AND THEIR OFFICIAL DUTIES, EVEN THOUGH SUCH 
CONFLICTS ARE WIDELY VIEWED TO BE ENDEMIC THROUGHOUT ALL LEVELS OF 
UKRAINIAN GOVERNMENT. 
 
4.  (U)  SIMILARLY, WHILE THERE IS CURRENTLY SOME LEGISLATION ON 
FINANCIAL DISCLOSURES, IT IS WIDELY VIEWED TO BE INEFFECTIVE.  THE 
INFORMATION REQUIRED TO BE DISCLSOSED IS INSUFFICIENT, AND SUCH 
DISCLOSURES ARE ROUTINELY FILED IN HUMAN RESOURCES OFFICES AND NOT 
SUBJECT TO FURTHER REVIEW. 
 
 
THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE DRAFTS  NOW BEFORE THE RADA 
 
5.  (U)  AS PART OF COMPONENT THREE OF THE MCC TCP, THREE DOJ/OPDAT 
RESIDENT LEGAL ADVISORS (RLAS) HAVE BEEN WORKING SINCE 2007 WITH A 
TEAM OF THREE UKRAINIAN LAWYERS ON BOTH PROFESSIONAL ETHICS AND 
FINANCIAL DISCLSOURES BY PUBLIC SERVANTS.  WORKING GROUPS ON EACH 
SUBJECT WERE CREATED, COMPOSED OF REPRESENTATIVES OF VARIOUS 
RELEVANT PARTS OF THE UKRAINIAN GOVERNMENT, AS WELL AS LOCAL 
EXPERTS, NGOS AND CIVIL SOCIETY.  THE RLAS ARRANGED FOR 
INTERNATIONAL EXPERTS TO COME TO UKRAINE TO PARTICIPATE IN 
ROUNDTABLE CONFERENCES AND LEGISLATIVE DRAFTING SESSIONS WITH THE 
WORKING GROUPS, AND LED THE WORKING GROUPS ON STUDY TOURS TO OTHER 
COUNTRIES IN EUROPE AND THE UNITED STATES TO LEARN HOW SUCH SYSTEMS 
FUNCTION ELSEWHERE.  AT TIMES, THE WORKING GROUPS WERE COMBINED TO 
ADDRESS COMMON ISSUES.  OUTREACH SESSIONS WERE ALSO CONDUCTED 
THROUGHOUT UKRAINE, AT WHICH ADDITIONAL INPUT WAS GAINED FROM LOCAL 
PUBLIC SERVANTS, ACADEMICS, NGOS AND THE MEDIA. 
 
6.  (SBU)  AS A RESULT OF THESE EFFORTS, DRAFT LEGISLATION WAS 
PREPARED ON BOTH PROFESSIONAL ETHICS AND THE DISCLOSURE OF FINANCIAL 
AND OUTSIDE INTERESTS BY PUBLIC SERVANTS.  IN THE CASE OF THE 
LATTER, THERE WERE ADDITIONAL DETAILED DISCUSSIONS WITH 
REPRESENTATIVES OF THE STATE TAX ADMINISTRATION, THE MINISTRY OF 
FINANCE AND THE MINISTRY OF JUSTICE IN ORDER TO REVISE THE 
LEGISLATION TO INCORPORATE THE IDEA THAT, PARTICUARLY UNDER CURRENT 
FINANCIAL CIRCUMSTANCES, THE STATE TAX ADMINISTRATION WOULD HANDLE 
THE INITIAL RECEIPT AND PROCESSING OF THE FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE FORMS 
(WHICH IT ALSO APPARENTLY VIEWS AS AN INITIAL STEP TOWARD ITS 
DESIRED GOAL OF UNIFORM TAX DECLARATIONS BY ALL UKRAINIANS). 
 
7.  (SBU)  WHEN IT BECAME CLEAR THAT IT WOULD BE IMPOSSIBLE TO 
PROCEED THROUGH THE CABINET OF MINISTERS PROCESS TO INTRODUCE THE 
DRAFT LEGISLATION DURING THE LIFE OF THE MCC TCP, THE RLAS 
COORDINATED WITH THE RADA, IN WHICH A COALITION OF MPS WAS FORMED 
THAT REPRESENTED VARIOUS FACTIONS SO AS TO TRY TO AVOID 
PARTISANSHIP.  THIS COALITI
ON REGISTERED BOTH DRAFTS ON MAY 14, AND 
THEY WERE ASSIGNED TO THE COMMITTEE ON COMBATING ORGANIZED CRIME AND 
CORRUPTION, FOR WHOM THE RLAS HAVE SERVED AS ADVISORS ON 
ANTI-CORRUPTION LEGISLATION FOR SOME TIME. 
 
 
THE JUNE 3 HEARING 
 
8.  (U)  ON JUNE 3, THE DOJ/OPDAT MCC PROGRAM SPONSORED A HEARING ON 
THE DRAFT LEGISLATION WITH THE RADA COMMITTEE ON COMBATING ORGANIZED 
CRIME AND CORRUPTION.  AT THE INVITATION OF THE DOJ/OPDAT MCC 
PROGRAM, THE HEARING WAS CO-SPONSORED BY THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE'S 
LOCAL ANTI-CORRUPTION PROJECT (UPAC) AND THE INDIANA UNIVERSITY 
PARLIAMENTARY DEVELOPMENT PROJECT (IUPDP II).  JOINED WITH THE TWO 
BILLS DEVELOPED THROUGH THE MCC PROGRAM WAS A THIRD DRAFT, PREPARED 
IN COORDINATION WITH THE STATE CIVIL SERVICE, THAT COMBINED SOME OF 
THE CONFLICTS OF INTEREST PROVISIONS DEVELOPED THROUGH OUR WORKING 
GROUP WITH LIMITED FINANCIAL DECLARATIONS PROVISIONS.  THE HEARING 
WAS VERY SUCCESSFUL, WITH THE DRAFT LEGISLATION DEVELOPED THROUGH 
THE DOJ/OPDAT MCC PROGRAM RECEIVING A VERY POSITIVE RECEPTION. 
 
9.  (U)  INTRODUCTORY REMARKS AT THE HEARING WERE MADE BY COMMITTEE 
CHAIR MP IHOR KALETNIK, AMBASSADOR AKE PETERSON, THE REPRESENTATIVE 
TO UKRAINE OF THE SECRETARY GENERAL OF THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE (COE), 
AND THE USAID MISSION DIRECTOR FOR UKRAINE AND MOLDOVA.  MP KALETNIK 
SAID THAT THE ANTI-CORRUPTION EFFORT, OF WHICH THESE BILLS WERE A 
PART, INVOLVED NOT JUST PROSECUTING CRIMES, BUT ALSO DETERRING 
MISCONDUCT AND ESTABLISHING TRANSPARENCY AND PUBLIC CONFIDENCE IN 
GOVERNMENT.  HE SAID THAT THE RADA NEEDED TO ADOPT THESE LAWS, NOT 
JUST TO IDENTIFY ILLICIT ENRICHMENT, BUT ALSO FINANCIAL CONFLICTS OF 
INTEREST, WHICH HE DESCRIBED AS A NEW BUT IMPORTANT CONCEPT IN 
URKAINE.  THE REPRESENTATIVE OF THE COE SAID THAT IT SUPPORTS THE 
DRAFTS AND USAID MISSION DIRECTOR DESCRIBED THEM AS "CRUCIAL" 
LEGISLATION FOR UKRAINE. 
 
10.  (U) THE NEXT ADDRESSES WERE GIVEN BY THE MPS WHO INTRODUCED THE 
CIVIL SERVICE DRAFT AND THE MCC-DEVELOPED LEGISLATION.  MP 
MIROSHNICHENKO, WHO HAD INTRODUCED THE DRAFT PREPARED BY THE 
UKRAINIAN CIVIL SERVICE, NOTED THAT UKRAINE NOW HAD A BODY OF PEOPLE 
WHO UNDERSTAND THESE ISSUES, SPECIFICALLY CITING A STUDY TOUR TO THE 
UNITED STATES, WHICH HAD BEEN SPONSORED BY THE DOJ/OPDAT PROGRAM AND 
IN WHICH HE HAD PARTICIPATED.  HE ADVOCATED COMBINING THE DRAFTS AND 
COOPERATING ON SAME.  MP VLASENKO THEN SPOKE BRIEFLY ABOUT THE TWO 
DRAFTS DEVELOPED THROUGH THE DOJ/OPDAT MCC PROGRAM, AND AGREED THAT 
THE DRAFT INTRODUCED BY MP MIROSHNICHNENKO SHOULD BE COMBINED WITH 
THEM (THOUGH HE OPINED, AND OTHERS AGREED, THAT THE PROFESSIONAL 
ETHICS AND FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE PROVISIONS SHOULD REMAIN IN SEPARATE 
LAWS).  VLASENKO NOTED THAT UKRAINE HAD DROPPED FROM 117 TO 134 OUT 
OF 180 COUNTRIES IN THE RECENT CORRUPTION PERCEPTIONS INDEX (WHERE 
IT IS TIED WITH PAKISTAN AND NICARAGUA), AND THAT THESE LAWS WERE 
NEEDED TO COMBAT BOTH CONFLICTS OF INTEREST AND ILLICIT ENRICHMENT. 
 
11.  (U)  THE FLOOR WAS THEN TURNED OVER TO THE EXPERTS INVITED BY 
THE DOJ/OPDAT PROGRAM TO DISCUSS THE DRAFTS PREPARED UNDER COMPONENT 
THREE OF THE TCP.  GRECO PRESIDENT KOS, WHOSE VIEWS ARE PARTICULARLY 
INFLUENTIAL IN UKRAINE AS IT TRIES TO DEMONSTRATE ITS WILLINGNESS TO 
MEET EURO-ATLANTIC STANDARDS, TESTIFIED THAT THE BILLS WERE "AMONG 
THE MOST ADVANCED LAWS HE'S EVER SEEN IN HIS LIFE."  IN ADDITION TO 
FINDING THAT THEY COMPLY WITH ALL RELEVANT CONVENTIONS AND 
INSTRUMENTS, HE SAID THAT SOME OF THEIR PROVISIONS ARE IN LINE WITH 
THE MOST ADVANCED LEGAL ACTS IN THE WORLD, AND WOULD BE NEW, NOT 
JUST FOR UKRAINE, BUT FOR SOME OLDER EU STATES.  HE EXPLAINED THAT 
UKRAINE "NEEDS PRINCIPLES SO THAT PUBLIC OFFICIALS KNOW HOW TO 
BEHAVE," AND OPINED THAT, IF THE DRAFTS ARE ADOPTED, HE IS "SURE 
THEY [GRECO] WILL CONSIDER LOTS OF THE GRECO RECOMMENDATIONS 
ADOPTED."  KOS SAID THAT THE DRAFTS DEVELOPED THROUGH THE DOJ MCC 
PROGRAM ARE "EXCELLENT STARTING POINTS FOR THE FUTURE."  HE 
EXPRESSED HOPE FOR THE ANTI-CORRUPTION PACKAGE, WHICH THEREAFTER 
PASSED ON SECOND READING ON JUNE 11 AND IS VIEWED BY THE MINISTRY OF 
JUSTICE (MOJ) AND OTHERS AS AN INTIAL STEP OR FOUNDATION FOR THE 
DEVELOPMENT OF FURTHER ANTI-CORRUPTION LEGISLATION, PROMINENTLY 
INCLUDING THE TWO BILLS ON PROFESSIONAL ETHICS AND FINANCIAL 
DISCLOSURE BY PUBLIC SERVANTS. 
 
12.  (U)  DEAN TREANOR, FORMERLY DEPUTY ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL 
AT THE OFFICE OF LEGAL COUNSEL OF THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, NEXT 
TESTIFIED THAT THE DRAFTS DEVELOPED THROUGH THE DOJ/OPDAT MCC 
PROGRAM ARE "ESSENTIAL LEGISLATION" FOR UKRAINE.  HE OPINED THAT 
THEY DO AN "EXTRAORDINARY JOB" OF MEETING THE CORE PRINCIPLES 
NECESSARY TO REDUCE SYSTEMIC CORRUPTION TO EPISODIC CORRUPTION IN 
UKRAINE, WHICH HE IDENTIFIED AS:  (1) FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE, (2) A 
COMPREHENSIVE CODE OF ETHICS, (3) AN EFFECTIVE ENTITY OR INDIVIDUALS 
TO LOOK FOR CONFLICTS OF INTEREST, AND (4) SANCTIONS. 
 
13.  (SBU)  FOLLOWING THE EXPERTS, SEVERAL REPRESENTATIVES OF 
DIFFERENT PARTS OF THE UKRAINIAN GOVERNMENT SPOKE, ALL GENERALLY IN 
FAVOR OF THE DRAFT LEGISLATION. TYMOFIY MOTRENKO, THE HEAD OF THE 
MAIN DEPARTMENT OF THE UKRAINIAN CIVIL SERVICE, EXPRESSED HIS VIEW 
THAT CRIMINAL LIABILITY FOR VIOLATIONS OF THESE DRAFTS WAS "TOO 
RIGOROUS FOR UKRAINE," AS "PEOPLE MAKE ERRORS."  (COMMENT:  THE 
PROPOSED CRIMINAL SANCTIONS WOULD ONLY APPLY FOR THE MOST EGREGIOUS 
INTENTIONAL VIOLATIONS, NOT FOR ERRORS, AND MOST VIOLATIONS WOULD 
CERTAINLY BE SANCTIONED THOUGH DISCIPLINARY MEANS.  END COMMENT.) 
COMMITTEE VICE-CHAIR MP RIABECKA SPOKE ABOUT THE NEED TO PASS THE 
ANTI-CORRUPTION PACKAGE, AND SAID THAT THE DRAFTS CONSIDERED AT THE 
HEARING WOULD BE "FURTHER PROGRESS" AFTER THE PACKAGE PASSES. 
RIABECKA DID NOTE THAT THE DRAFTS WERE IN COMPLIANCE WITH THE 
COUNCIL OF EUROPE'S GUIDING PRINCIPLES, AS WELL AS THOSE OF THE 
UNITED NATIONS CONVENTION AGAINST CORRUPTION, AND RECOMMENDED THAT 
THE DRAFTS BE SUBJECT TO REVIEW AND ANALYSIS BY THE RADA BEFORE 
BEING FINALIZED, TAKING INTO ACCOUNT THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE 
HEARING, THE DOJ/OPDAT MCC PROGRAM, UPAC AND THE ANTI-CORRUPTION 
NETWORK OF THE ORGANIZATION FOR ECONOMIC COOPERATION AND 
DEVELOPMENT, OF WHICH UKRAINE ALSO IS A MEMBER. 
 
14.  (U) SINCE THE HEARING, THE DOJ/OPDAT MCC PROGRAM HAS PREPARED 
EXPERT ANALYSES COMPARING THE DRAFTS PREPARED THROUGH THE DOJ/OPDAT 
MCC PROGRAM AND THE DRAFT ADVANCED BY THE UKRAINIAN CIVIL SERVICE 
AND HAVE PROVIDED THESE COMMENTS TO THE COMMITTEE STAFF.  DOJ/OPDAT 
MCC PROJECT STAFF HAVE BEEN TOLD THAT, WHEN THE COMMITTEE HAS A 
QUORUM, IT IS HOPED THAT THE COMMITTEE WILL VOTE ON THE 
PROFESSIONAL ETHICS AND FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE DRAFTS IN THE NEAREST 
FUTURE.  ADDITIONALLY, DOJ/OPDAT MCC PROJECT STAFF WERE INFORMED ON 
JUNE 10 THAT THE COMMITTEE INTENDED TO SEND A LETTER TO THE CABINET 
OF MINISTERS ASKING FOR ITS SUPPORT FOR BOTH OF THE DRAFTS DEVELOPED 
THROUGH THE DOJ MCC PROGRAM.  IN A SUBSEQUENT MEETING ON JUNE 11, 
THE GOVERNMENT ANTI-CORRUPTION AGENT WITHIN THE OFFICE OF THE PRIME 
MINISTER ALSO EXPRESSED HIS INTENT TO SUPPORT THE DRAFTS. 
 
 &#x000
A;--------------- 
COMMENT 
--------------- 
 
15. (U) THE REGISTRATION AND POSITIVE RECEPTION RECEIVED IN THE RADA 
BY THE DRAFTS ON PROFESSIONAL ETHICS AND FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE FOR 
PUBLIC SERVANTS IS A SIGNIFICANT STEP FORWARD IN ACHIEVING THE AIMS 
OF ASSISTING UKRAINE TO DEVELOP COMPREHENSIVE AND EFFECTIVE 
LEGISLATION IN THESE AREAS CONSISTENT WITH EURO-ATLANTIC STANDARDS. 
EMBASSY WILL CONTINUE TO ENGAGE WITH PARTNERS IN THE RADA AND 
ELSEWHERE IN THE GOVERNMENT TO SUSTAIN THIS PROGRESS IN THE HOPE OF 
SEEING THE DRAFTS MOVE FORWARD TOWARD FINAL PASSAGE AS SOON AS 
POSSIBLE.

Wikileaks

Advertisements

From → UNCLASSIFIED

Leave a Comment

Post tour comment here

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: