Ambassador admits he linked Ukraine aid to investigations

Washington — The U.S. ambassador to the European Union revised sworn testimony to the impeachment committees to say he now remembers telling a top Ukrainian official that the release of delayed military aid was “likely” dependent on the country announcing investigations that would benefit President Trump politically, according to documents released Tuesday.

Gordon Sondland also told the House committees leading the impeachment inquiry that a coveted White House meeting between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Mr. Trump was contingent on Ukraine investigating supposed Ukrainian interference in the 2016 election and an energy company that had employed former Vice President Joe Biden’s son.

The 375-page transcript of Sondland’s October 17 deposition was released Tuesday. A three-page declaration from Sondland, along with a letter from his attorney dated November 4, appears at the end, and includes several revisions to his earlier testimony.

Sondland said accounts from other witnesses “have refreshed my recollection about conversations involving the suspension of U.S. aid.” He said he now remembers discussing the issue of military aid with Andriy Yermak, a top aid to Zelensky, during a “brief pull-aside conversation” in Warsaw in early September.

“I said that resumption of U.S. aid would likely not occur until Ukraine provided the public anti-corruption statement that we had been discussing for many weeks,” Sondland says in the revision. He also said he later learned that such an announcement would have to come from Zelensky himself.

Read the full text of Sondland’s testimony here

This is a developing story and will be updated.

Categories: Government & Politics, US & World News

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