By Megan R. Wilson - 05/05/14 06:21 PM EDT
A group of Ukrainian businessmen has hired former Rep. Jim Slattery (D-Kan.), now a partner at Wiley Rein, to help them connect with U.S. allies.
“These are independent businessmen in Ukraine who want to be involved in the process,” Slattery told The Hill on Monday. “These are not these oligarchs that we’ve been hearing about.”
Slattery told The Hill that he’s registering to lobby for the foundation mostly “out of an abundance of caution” and is taking more of a consultant role. Though he currently has no visits planned with lawmakers on their behalf, Slattery says he does "visit with people in our government about what's going on in Ukraine."
Forms indicate that the businessmen support “a free, independent and democratic Ukraine," something Slattery has worked on extensively.
As part of his pro bono work, he traveled to the country to be an international election monitor.
Slattery also advocated for the release of former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, who was imprisoned in 2011 for abuse of power and embezzlement by her political rivals. In February, she was released as the country descended into violent protests.
Her husband, Oleksandar, has paid Wiley Rein more than $1 million since 2011 for the representation.