Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky denies Trump tried to `blackmail` him

Trump’s case against whistleblower descends deeper into incoherence
   10/09/19 10:28 AM

Even before the call, security officials were concerned about the removal of the USA ambassador to Ukraine in May, and also about efforts by Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani to spread conspiracies involving Ukraine and indications that Trump wanted Zelensky to offer up potentially damaging information about Biden, according to the newspaper. In that call, Trump asked for Zelenskiy's cooperation on investigations related to former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, who is running for president, and his son, Hunter, who had business dealings in the Ukrainian gas company, Burisma.

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. "There was no blackmail".

Congressional Democrats believe Mr. Trump was holding up the military aid to use as leverage to pressure Ukraine and advance his domestic political interests before next year's US presidential election.

He added "I don't want to interfere in any way in the elections" in the US. Because there is really much information on this out there.

Zelenskiy said there were no conditions attached to him meeting Trump, including whether he should investigate the activities of Hunter at Burisma.

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. Trump's White House released a transcript of the call in September.

But others familiar with the matter said the move came after officials became aware of the internal concerns and wanted to prevent additional people from reading the document. "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".

"I don't want to interfere in US elections", Zelensky said. 'We are an independent country, we have relations with many countries, ' not just the United States, he said.

But the deference Mr. Zelensky showed to Mr. Trump on the July 25 call raises questions about how he would fare in one-on-one negotiations with Mr. Putin, the former KGB agent who has ruled Russian Federation for two decades. But the impeachment hearings mean that Ukraine will remain a central player in the USA drama through the 2020 presidential election and beyond.

Ukraine's president just can't stop talking.

At one point, the 41-year-old former comedian appeared to accuse reporters of trying to trick him into an answer that would make headlines in the U.S.

Asked what Ukraine did to persuade the U.S.to release the aid, Zelenskiy said: "We have many diplomatic contacts".

Volodymyr Zelenskiy's aptly named "media marathon" in a Kyiv food court Thursday started over breakfast croissants.

Trump responded to Zelensky's comments as well, saying on Twitter that he had done "nothing wrong".

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