00:49 GMT +325 June 2019
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    Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko

    Ukrainian Presidential Hopeful Starts Impeachment Process Against Poroshenko

    © AFP 2019 / PATRIK STOLLARZ
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    KIEV (Sputnik) - Yulia Tymoshenko, the head of Ukrainian pro-European Batkivshchyna party and a presidential candidate, announced that her party, along with other factions, would launch impeachment proceedings against Petro Poroshenko in light of the publication of a journalistic investigation into large-scale fraud in the country's defence sector.

    "We believe that the doings that the journalists have disclosed fall within the scope of Article 112 of the [Ukrainian] Criminal Code — high treason… We announce that we, together with other factions, are launching the impeachment process against the president," Tymoshenko said in her address for the Ukrainian parliament.

    READ MORE: Poroshenko Terminates Ukraine's Martial Law Imposed Over Kerch Strait Incident

    According to a report that was published on the Ukrainian journalistic investigation website Bihus.info on Monday, several Ukrainian officials close to Poroshenko have been selling spare parts for military equipment to national defence enterprises, setting the markup at up to 300 percent, since 2016. They have reportedly been smuggling the spare parts from Russia or buying them at Ukrainian depots. The authors of the report claim that the offenders have acquired at least 250 million hryvnias (over $9 million) using this scheme.

    Under Ukrainian law, high treason, along with other criminal offences, may trigger presidential impeachment. According to the established procedure, a temporary investigation commission is created in the parliament, and then lawmakers discuss the conclusions of the commission at a special session. A total of 226 votes are needed for the 450-seat parliament to bring charges against the president, while impeachment requires support by at least 300 lawmakers.

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    impeachment, Yulia Tymoshenko, Petro Poroshenko, Ukraine
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