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Billions of EU cash being squandered in Ukraine

Jerome Hughes

Press TV, Brussels

For the past twenty years now, the European Union has been pumping billions of euro into Ukraine. The master plan, according to analysts, is to create a big ally right next to Russia.

The problem is Ukraine is still corrupt to the core, according to a new report from the EU's financial watchdog, the European Court of Auditors or ECA. We spoke online to one of the authors. Since 2014 alone, EU taxpayers have sent €12.5bn to Kiev via the European Commission.

Corruption reform efforts funded by the EU have failed, the European Court of Auditors report finds. Critics say the EU uses Ukraine as a pawn to provoke Russia. On the issue of energy alone, it appears Moscow would be of greater benefit to the EU.

Question: "When you look at the scathing report, does it make you think you've picked the wrong side in all of this?" The European Court of Auditors report states "The EU has long been aware of the connection between oligarchs, high-level officials, politicians, the judiciary and state-owned enterprises."

However, the 27-nation bloc has failed to tackle this with its cash injections. Experts say gangsters are running Ukraine. The EU's executive arm insists progress has been made in the fight against corruption in the country despite what the ECA report says.

The European Commission's defence of Ukraine simply could not have been more robust. There's little to no doubt that taxpayers will view that as scandalous.

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