FILE PHOTO: U.S. Vice President Mike Pence attends a information convention on the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, Turkey, October 17, 2019. Information/Huseyin Aldemir/
WASHINGTON (Information) – Vice President Mike Pence’s workplace, responding to testimony on Wednesday by U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland, mentioned the 2 males had not mentioned tying the discharge of U.S. assist to Ukraine to “potential investigations” throughout a September journey to Poland.
Sondland, testifying earlier than U.S. lawmakers conducting the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, mentioned he had informed Pence about his considerations that help for Ukraine was being tied to probes sought by Trump earlier than Pence met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy in Warsaw.
Home Democrats are investigating whether or not Trump abused the facility of his workplace by pressuring Ukraine to probe his political rivals, together with former Vice President Joe Biden, a high Democratic contender in search of to problem him within the November 2020 election.
Trump, in a July 25 phone name with Zelenskiy, sought an investigation right into a debunked idea relating to the 2016 U.S. election and a Democratic Celebration server. He additionally requested Zelenskiy to research Biden and Biden’s son Hunter, who served on the board of Ukrainian firm Burisma.
Sondland informed lawmakers Pence was conscious of the hassle to get Ukraine to decide to finishing up the probes.
“The vice chairman by no means had a dialog with Gordon Sondland about investigating the Bidens, Burisma, or the conditional launch of economic assist to Ukraine primarily based upon potential investigations,” Marc Brief, Pence’s chief of employees, mentioned in a press release.
“This alleged dialogue recalled by Ambassador Sondland by no means occurred,” Brief mentioned.
In his testimony, Sondland mentioned he had raised considerations concerning the linkage between the help and the investigations Trump sought.
“I discussed to Vice President Pence earlier than the conferences with the Ukrainians that I had considerations that the delay in assist had grow to be tied to the difficulty of investigations,” he mentioned in his opening remarks.
Reporting by Steve Holland; Writing by Doina Chiacu; Modifying by Franklin Paul and Invoice Berkrot