A conflict took place between Interior Minister Arsen Avakov and Odessa governor Mikheil Saakasvhili. According to Avakov’s post at Facebook, it happened during the recent meeting of the National Council for Reforms chaired by President Petro Poroshenko. The event took place at the Presidential Administration in Kyiv.
The Interior Minister says the incident took place after he asked Saakashvili about the course of privatization of the Odessa portside plant. In return, Avakov said, Saakashvili accused the minister of corruption and started directly insulting him.
“I restrained myself from punching him and poured water on him”, Avakov wrote.
Saakashvili, in turn, claimed that Avakov demanded that he leave the country, and Prime Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk called him "an actor on tour". Later, the Odessa governor said he would not leave the country, as he stays committed to the Ukrainian nation. “I decided to dedicate my life to the cause of purification of the Ukrainian power, so that the Ukrainian state would prosper. I will not surrender. I hope for support of my Ukrainian compatriots. I also expect that Ukrainian president takes the rightful position in this regard”, Saakashvili said.
Earlier, Saakashvili claimed that the new government contract for gas supplies to the Odessa portside plant will debit USD 93 mln from Ukraine’s state budget. Prosecutor of Odessa region David Sakvarelidze added that his office investigates the case of criminal occupation of USD 160 mln of public funds allocated to the Odessa portside plant.
The both parties demanded to release the video that would prove their words. However, the Presidential Administration Deputy Head Dmytro Shymkiv said the Administration would not release the video. “The conflict is a personal matter between the politicians, so it shouldn’t become public fare”, he stressed.