Saturday, 06 June, 2020

Ukrainian President Makes Statement, Says President Trump Did Not Blackmail Him

Deanna Wagner | 12 October, 2019, 17:19

Ukrainian President is holding an all-day "media marathon" in a Kyiv food court amid growing questions about his actions as president.

And on Thursday, he did what no politician had done before - a more than 12-hour press conference that Ukraine's National Records Agency declared the longest in world history.

In an all-day "media marathon" held in a Kyiv food court, Zelenskiy played down suggestions that Trump pressured him in exchange for USA military aid to help Ukraine battle Russian-backed separatists. While he fielded questions in Ukrainian, Russian and English from journalists sitting with him around a table, others sat below eating.

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

Zelensky said he would also look into claims about whether Ukraine interfered in the 2016 Presidential Election.

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Trump said the military aid was frozen because of concerns about corruption in Ukraine, but the move prompted a congressional outcry and the money was released in September.

When asked how the White House summary compared with that of Ukraine, Zelenskiy said he hadn't checked but that he thought it matched "completely". "Because if I, as president of Ukraine, comment the conversation with Mr. Trump, it will be primarily interference in your [American] legislative system, interference in your future elections, which means there will be interference in the electoral process, which will become opaque and dependent because of me", Zelensky said. He said he "didn't even check" whether the Ukrainian transcript is the same, but "I think they match". He said the transcript was correct.

National security officials complained to a White House lawyer about US President Donald Trump's dealings with Ukraine both before his phone call with President Volodymyr Zelensky and immediately after it, The Washington Post reported Thursday.

Responding Thursday to questions from The Associated Press, Zelenskiy said that he only learned after their July 25 phone call that the US had blocked hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid to Ukraine.

The US House of Representatives is conducting an impeachment inquiry into Trump over alleged abuse of power during the July 25 call in which he asked Zelensky to conduct a probe of potential 2020 White House rival Joe Biden and his son, who served on the board of a Ukrainian gas company. I would like that what Mr. Trump said will be judged by the laws of the United States of America, and not by me, as the president of Ukraine.