Ukranian PM offers to quit over auido leak

:: Peoples Time Online ::

Ukrainian Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk submitted his resignation on Friday after an audio recording suggested he had criticized the president, but then appeared to suggest that he might stay in his job, reports Reuters.

President Volodymyr Zelenskiy would consider the resignation letter later on Friday, the president’s office said.

Speculation over Honcharuk’s position has grown this week after a recording of a man discussing Zelenskiy’s purported lack of knowledge of economics was circulated on messaging channels, apparently at a meeting of the prime minister, finance minister and the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) in December.

Zelenskiy is a former comic actor who had no political experience when he swept to power in an election last year on the back of public anger over high-level corruption.

Honcharuk said on Friday the recording had been doctored and was made up of different fragments of what had been said at government meetings.

“Its contents artificially create the impression that my team and I do not respect the president, who is our political leader,” Honcharuk said on social media. He did not say whether it was his voice heard in the recording.

Central bank officials and the finance minister have declined to comment on the recording.

Contacted by Reuters shortly after his announcement and asked whether he indeed intended to step down, Honcharuk said: “Do not jump to conclusions.”

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