Published: Sat, October 12, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Ukrainian President Zelensky: Trump didn't blackmail me during call about Joe Biden

Ukrainian President Zelensky: Trump didn't blackmail me during call about Joe Biden

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky does not see a corruption component in his telephone conversation with U.S. President Donald Trump. "We are an independent country".

What it does suggest, though, is that the efforts to obtain damaging information about political opponents predates the July 25th phone call, something that has only been suggested in the half in references to the first phone call between Trump and Zelensky, which occurred shortly after Zelensky's election in April and which was described at the time as being merely congratulatory but which has also been rumored to have included some discussion of the Biden issue.

Trump wanted Kiev to investigate Hunter Biden's activities in Ukrainian gas firm Burisma. "When I did find out, I raised it with [U.S. Vice-President Mike] Pence at a meeting in Warsaw", Mr. Zelensky said on Thursday.

Ukraine, France and Germany had planned to hold the meeting of the group known as the Normandy Four, aimed at resolving the five-year-long conflict, as early as last month, Zelenskiy told reporters, but Russian Federation turned down the proposal.

But new details about the sequence inside the White House suggest that concerns about the call and events leading up to it were profound even among Trump's top advisers, including Bolton and then-acting deputy national security adviser Charles Kupperman.

Zelenskiy is notably trying to end a five-year conflict with Russia-backed separatist in eastern Ukraine, and is treading carefully to ensure continued support from the USA while trying to make peace with powerful neighbor Russian Federation.

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"I don't want to be pulled into this because I understand that my words could impact the elections of the American people", he said.

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Zelenskiy said the "key question" for him was to try to persuade the White House to "change its rhetoric" about Ukraine as a corrupt and untrustworthy country. "And in case we need to find a solution to questions of this level, questions about our country's security, we use all our powerful possibilities".

Ukraine's president just can't stop talking.

CNN previously reported that unsettled aides also immediately began quizzing each other about whether they should alert senior officials who were not on the call - mainly those at the Justice Department, since Trump had invoked the agency's boss, Attorney General Bill Barr, multiple times during the 30-minute talk.

'We are an independent country, we have relations with many countries, ' not just the USA, he said.

There is no evidence that the Bidens did anything wrong in Ukraine.

Trump has said the United States has an "absolute right" to ask foreign leaders to investigate corruption cases.

Most of the questions at Thursday's unusual media event related to the Russian Federation conflict or Ukraine's economic troubles.

Zelensky would not weigh in on the impeachment inquiry, saying it was an internal USA matter that he has no position on, according to The Washington Post. -Ukrainian relations in the future, "but if there is, we'll learn about it on Twitter".

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