Published: Sat, January 25, 2020
Global News | By Blake Casey

Pompeo loses temper, curses at journalist over Ukraine questions

Pompeo loses temper, curses at journalist over Ukraine questions

While the interview started with questions regarding Washington's position on Iran, Pompeo reportedly did not offer specifics about how the US government plans to stop Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

In an interview aired on NPR's "All Things Considered" on Friday, Pompeo instead replied to NPR's Mary Louise Kelly question by saying, "You know, I agreed to come on your show today to talk about Iran".

The secretary of state came under increased scrutiny a year ago when it emerged that he had been one of the senior administration officials listening in on Trump's July 25 phone call with Zelensky. I've defended every single person on this team.

Aside from using expletives multiple times and shouting at the reporter, Pompeo reportedly asked Kelly if she could find the country in question on a map, NBC News reported. The US State Department released a transcript of the exchange on its website.

Pompeo said he had defended "every State Department official", to which Kelly said: "Sir, respectfully where have you defended Marie Yovanovitch?". When she asked him to specify when he has defended Yovanovitch specifically he said, "I've said all I'm going to say" and ended the interview.

In Kiev, Pompeo will meet President Volodymyr Zelensky, who is at the center of Trump's historic impeachment trial for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

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Pompeo, a close associate of Trump, has been accused of personally failing to defend Marie Yovanovitch, Washington's former ambassador to Ukraine who was abruptly called home last spring after being subjected to a smear campaign led by Rudy Giuliani, the president's personal lawyer.

Kelly continued, "He used the F-word in that sentence and many others".

"I pointed to Ukraine", Kelly said. Pompeo is due to travel to Ukraine next week.

Kelly claims that after he cut short the interview that he leaned in and glared at her for several seconds.

"I suspect that much of what's been reported will ultimately prove wrong", Pompeo said in a separate interview with radio host Tony Katz, "but our obligation, my obligations as secretary of state, is to make sure that we evaluate, investigate". The 70 U.S. Secretary of State then reportedly asked his aids to bring a map that had no marking or writing.

Ortagus said the state secretary will also meet with religious, civil society, and business community leaders, and attend a wreath-laying ceremony to honor those fallen in the conflict in eastern Ukraine, where fighting between Ukrainian government forces and Russia-backed separatists has killed more than 13,000 people since April 2014.

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