MOSCOW (AP) — Ukraine's government, stymied by political infighting, faced yet another set-back on Monday when a deputy general prosecutor resigned, saying he was fed up with endemic corruption in the country's judiciary.
Vitaly Kasko's resignation comes on the eve of a possible no-confidence vote against Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk's government and serves as another mark against the fraying coalition government, which has faced increased skepticism from the international community.
Popular in the West for his reform-minded ideas, Kasko echoed the same frustrations with government-sanctioned corruption and cronyism that Aivaras Abromavicius expressed when he resigned from his post as economy minister on Feb. 3 and accused President Petro Poroshenko's ally in Parliament of corruption.
Kasko accused Viktor Shoikon, the Poroshenko-appointed general prosecutor, of derailing anti-graft cases and sidelining investigations into the 2014 shootings on Kiev's Independence Square.
"The General Prosecutor's Office has become a dead institution, which nobody believes is independent," Kasko said when he announced his resignation during a press briefing in the capital.
Shoikon's assistant called Kasko's resignation a "PR stunt" and his accusations groundless.
The U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt tweeted that Kasko's resignation "is a blow to Ukraine's reform progress."
The West has repeatedly expressed its impatience with the pace of reform in Ukraine and the IMF has threatened to withhold much-needed aid money to the country if drastic improvements are not made.