Ukraine fires military conscription officials for taking bribes
An anti-corruption purge has sacked Ukrainian conscription officials accused of taking bribes and smuggling people out of the country.
As a result of the removal of all regional officials responsible for military conscription, more than 30 people are facing criminal charges.
During wartime, bribery is considered high treason.
While Ukraine’s counter-offensive operation continues, efforts are being made to bolster its armed forces.
According to the president’s office, corruption allegations threaten Ukraine’s national security and undermine trust in state institutions.
Candidates with battlefield experience and intelligence service vetting will be selected as replacement officials, according to the statement.
Video posted on social media by Mr Zelensky shows officials taking cash and cryptocurrency bribes or helping people eligible for military service leave the country.
As a general rule, all men over the age of 18 who are capable of fighting can be conscripted, and most adult men under the age of 60 are prohibited from leaving the country.
“All regional military commissars are being dismissed,” he said.
A wartime system should be run by people who understand war and why cynicism and bribery are high treason.”
“The way they treat warriors, the way they treat their duties, it’s just immoral,” he said of the conscription system.
An inspection of local army offices revealed the corruption.
In all, 112 criminal proceedings have been initiated against 33 suspects against regional officials, and abuses have been reported across the country, Zelensky said.
Neither Ukraine nor Russia reveal how many soldiers have been killed since the February 2022 invasion, but both continue to recruit widely.
The anti-corruption drive is the latest initiative launched by the Zelensky government.
A number of officials accused of corruption left their posts in January, and the head of the country’s Supreme Court was detained in May as a result of bribery allegations.
To join Western institutions such as the EU, Ukraine would have to overcome corruption in public services, which has been a long-standing problem.
ranks 116th out of 180 countries in Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index, but its position has improved dramatically in recent years.