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Ukraine's President Creates Anti-Corruption Court

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (right) shakes hands with new judges from Ukraine's High Anti-Corruption Court during an oath-taking ceremony on April 11.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, who has been repeatedly accused of turning a blind eye to corruption, has ordered the creation of a special anti-corruption court.

"By setting up the anti-corruption court, we are completing the creation of an independent anti-corruption infrastructure," Poroshenko said on April 11 during an official ceremony in Kyiv where he signed a decree to appoint judges to the new High Anti-Corruption Court.

"Today ... 38 new judges will take up their duties in a completely new court," Poroshenko said.

The creation of the court has been a longtime demand of both the United States and the European Union.

Poroshenko has been accused of failing to tackle graft or rein in influential magnates.

The exposure of a military embezzlement scheme that allegedly involved top Poroshenko associates as well as a factory controlled by the president has badly dented his popularity.

Poroshenko has denied any links to the scheme.

The creation of the High Anti-Corruption Court comes ahead of the April 21 presidential runoff where Poroshenko will be facing comic actor Volodymyr Zelenskiy who has a commanding lead in some polls.

Based on reporting by AP and Interfax