Ex-Ukrainian prime minister says Joe Biden’s son must be investigated

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Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov is calling for an investigation into the son of 2020 presidential candidate Joe Biden in order to assess whether Hunter Biden’s role in a Ukrainian gas company complied with the nation’s laws. 

Azarov made the call in an interview with Reuters following a week in which revelations about President Trump’s interactions with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky prompted a formal impeachment inquiry in the House. 

{mosads}Azarov, who served as prime minister from 2010 to 2014, did not address any specific laws. No evidence has been provided that suggests Hunter Biden committed wrongdoing while serving on the board of Burisma Holdings Ltd.

Azarov acknowledged to Reuters that he is not aware of any evidence of wrongdoing by Hunter Biden.

“It’s a fact [his directorship and fees] and not made up. It should be investigated so that the ‘i’s can be dotted and the ‘t’s crossed,” Azarov said, adding that he thought a probe was “essential.”

The former prime minister made the comments from Moscow, a city he fled to following 2014 protests that led to the ouster of former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych. 

Azarov is reportedly wanted by Ukrainian authorities on charges of embezzlement and misappropriation.

Ukraine’s National Anti-Corruption Bureau announced last Friday that it would investigate Burisma’s activities between 2010 and 2012, Reuters noted. But the agency said that it would not look into matters related to Hunter Biden joining the board in 2014. 

Hunter Biden was a director on the board of the company between 2014 and 2018, Reuters noted. 

Joe Biden’s campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill. 

Hunter Biden’s role in the Ukrainian gas company has gained increased attention in light of revelations that Trump encouraged Zelensky to open an investigation into the Bidens over unsubstantiated allegations of corruption. 

A whistleblower complaint released Thursday accuses Trump of seeking to enlist Ukraine’s help in his 2020 reelection efforts. A White House memo of a July 25 phone call between Trump and Zelensky also confirms Trump asked Zelensky to work with his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani and Attorney General William Barr to investigate the Biden family. 

Ukraine’s former prosecutor general said last week that a previous investigation of Hunter Biden was abandoned after no evidence of impropriety was discovered. 

“From the perspective of Ukrainian legislation, he did not violate anything,” Yuri Lutsenko, who resigned earlier this year, told The Washington Post. “Hunter Biden cannot be responsible for violations of the management of Burisma that took place two years before his arrival.”

Trump has tried to portray the former vice president as corrupt over his efforts to dismiss a top prosecutor in Ukraine who was investigating Burisma.

There is no evidence that suggests Joe Biden was working in his son’s interests during his efforts. 

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