Ukraine foreign minister: No links between aid, investigations

The Democrats’ impeachment campaign against President Trump is centered on a claim that he used the threat of withholding U.S. aid to pressure Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden.

However, in a statement published by Interfax-Ukraine, Ukraine Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko said Thursday that U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland never asked him for investigations into Joe Biden’s son’s role in Ukraine while Biden was vice president.

“Ambassador Sondland did not tell us, and did not tell me exactly, about the relation between the [military] assistance and the investigations. You should ask him,” Prystaiko told reporters.

“I do not recall any conversation with me as with foreign minister. It was not we, the Ukrainian officials [who were told this],” he said.

“I have never seen a direct link between investigations and security assistance. Yes, investigations were mentioned, you know, in a presidential conversation. But there was no clear connection between these events,” Prystaiko added.

The allegations arose in a whistleblower complaint that claimed Trump pressured Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on a July 25 phone call to investigate a Ukraine link to the release of Democratic National Committee emails during the 2016 election and Hunter Biden’s receipt of more than $3 million from a Ukrainian firm while his father was Obama’s point man for Ukraine policy.