UPDATED 10:30 AM PT – Monday, October 7, 2019
Top U.S. diplomats will testify this week on Capitol Hill, including former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and Deputy Secretary of State George Kent. Yovanovitch was removed from her post after she allegedly gave Ukrainian prosecutor Yuri Lutsenko a “do not prosecute” list of American allies she felt were above the law.
Also scheduled to testify is U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland, who made headlines when private text messages between him and top Ukrainian officials were released. In the messages he confirmed there was never a request for a “quid pro quo of any kind” from the president. The texts follow the July phone call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, where Trump congratulated Zelensky on his landslide victory.
“I actually spoke with President Trump just a few minutes before he placed the call and not only did the president call to congratulate president Zelensky, but also to begin the collaboration of charting the pathway forward with the U.S. support of Ukraine and a White House visit that’s upcoming for President Zelensky,” stated Sondland.
The U.S. Ambassador to the European Union and U.S. Special Envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker made frequent visits to Ukraine in the hopes of improving U.S. relations. Volker has been interviewed in regards to the matter and although Democrats attempted to pry him for information they could use in their impeachment inquiry, he maintained the president’s innocence.
“Ambassador Volker — unbelievably knowledgeable about what was going on in Ukraine…just a true professional in our diplomatic corps, but not one thing he has said comports with any of the democratic impeachment narrative, not one thing,” said Ohio Representative Jim Jordan.
The diplomats are scheduled to testify before various subcommittees in closed-door sessions this week.