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Ex-ambassador claims Trump wanted her out

12 October 2019

One of the people told the Times that investigators are looking into Giuliani's attempts to subvert Marie Yovanovitch, the former American ambassador to Ukraine.

On Tuesday House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairmen Adam B. Schiff, California Democrat, said those documents are "highly relevant" to the impeachment inquiry.

On May 9, 2018, Sessions sent a private letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in which he cited "concrete evidence from close companions that Ambassador Yovanovitch has spoken privately and repeatedly about her disdain for the current administration". In the call, Trump pressed Zelenskiy to investigate his political rival Joe Biden, a former U.S. vice president and a leading candidate seeking the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

The opposition-led probe centres on Mr Trump's dealings with Ukraine, including a call to investigate his presidential election rival Joe Biden.

Zelenskiy said it was "wrong" of the White House to publish a rough transcript of the call - and said he will not publish the Ukrainian transcript.

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ABC News has also learned that the president's former Russian Federation adviser Fiona Hill has agreed to sit down with congressional investigators on Monday.

"You have conducted your proceedings in secret".

Yovanovitch, in her opening statement obtained by several news agencies, said she was "incredulous that the USA government chose to remove an ambassador based, as best as I can tell, on unfounded and false claims by people with clearly questionable motives".

"I'm very distressed with her present difficulties, but enormously buoyed by her courage", former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage, who served in that post under Republican George W. Bush, told Reuters. The source of that accusation, Ukraine's former prosecutor general, Yuriy Yovanovitch, has proved to be untruthful in his statements to US media. Lutsenko accused the Obama-era U.S. Embassy in Kiev of interfering with his ability to prosecute corruption cases. Lutsenko claimed to have received from the ambassador Yovanovitch a list of people whose prosecution the Ukrainians were advised not to pursue.

The former ambassador, who since her removal has been on academic sabbatical at Georgetown University, went on to talk more generally about the crisis of morale at the state department. Lutsenko later retracted his accusations about the list.

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Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who is now Trump's personal lawyer, has alleged Yovanovitch blocked efforts to persuade Ukraine to investigate the former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Yovanovitch was in her ambassadorial role from 2016 to May 2019 when she was dismissed two months ahead of schedule. Former diplomats said it was inconceivable Trump would give her another assignment, triggering her retirement.

Volodymyr Zelenskiy said for the first time that his country will "happily" investigate the conspiracy theory pushed by Trump that it was Ukrainians, not Russians, who interfered in the 2016 USA presidential election.

She denied allegations that she had been disloyal to Trump - or that she told staffers to ignore him because he was going to be impeached. He also said he knew he had needed to secure a meeting with Trump, saying United States relations with Ukraine were "tired" and the Americans "wanted to know where their money had gone". "She would not accept me as a new president well enough".

Zelensky commiserated with Trump and described his own issues with the female Ukrainian ambassador to the United States, whom he says he also immediately recalled due to her outward criticism of him.

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Ex-ambassador claims Trump wanted her out