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Groundwork to freeze Ukraine aid laid before Trump-Zelensky conversation

Source : 112 Ukraine

Redacted emails were publicly released Wednesday morning
20:01, 22 January 2020

The New York Times

According to newly released emails, officials at the White House's Office of Management and Budget were laying the groundwork to freeze military aid to Ukraine the night before U.S. President Donald Trump's controversial phone conversation with President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky that took place on July 25, 2019, CNN reports.

On the evening of July 24, the night before the call, OMB officials shared a "Ukraine Prep Memo" with Michael Duffey - the budget official who would play a crucial role in carrying out Trump's funding freeze.

The contents of the memo are redacted, as are many other parts of most of the emails that were publicly released Wednesday morning.

Related: Behind the Ukraine aid freeze: 84 days of conflict and confusion

"The public can now see even more evidence of the President's corrupt scheme as it unfolded in real-time," Austin Evers, executive director of American Oversight, said in a statement.

He also emphasized that the volume of material released, and the volume of material still secreted away only highlighted how much the administration had withheld from the House, the Senate, and the American public.

As we reported earlier, the U.S. Senate voted on Wednesday to approve rules governing the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, including delaying a debate over whether to call witnesses until the middle of the trial. Reuters informed about it.

The Senate voted 53-47 to adopt the trial plan, which allows opening arguments from House lawmakers prosecuting the case to begin later.

Related: US admits delay of 214 mln dollars-worth military aid for Ukraine illegal

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