Wednesday, October 23, 2019

the Trump administration prevents a key witness from introducing himself

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The US State Department has asked Gordon Sondland, a diplomat close to the president, not to attend the scheduled hearing in the House of Representatives.

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"I would love to send the ambassador (Gordon) Sondland, a very good man and a great American, to testify, but unfortunately he would testify before a bogus court totally biased," tweeted the US president. DANIEL MIHAILESCU / AFP

Since House Democratic Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced on September 24 the opening of an indictment investigation (impeachment) of Donald Trump, the president chose, Tuesday, October 8, to harden the confrontation with the Democrats of the Congress.

In a tweet, he described the ongoing hearings in Congress as "Bogus court", justifying the decision to prevent the US ambassador to the European Union from testifying. "I would love to send ambassador (Gordon) Sondland, a very good man and a great American, to testify, but unfortunately he would testify before a bogus court totally biased", wrote the American president.

Not allowed to testify

Gordon Sondland, the US ambassador to the European Union – a close friend of Donald Trump who helped finance his campaign – whose name appeared in a series of SMS, was to testify. "Early this morning, the State Department asked Ambassador Gordon Sondland not to appear today" at the hearing in the House of Representatives, said Robert Luskin, the lawyer of Mr. Sondland, without specifying the reasons for this decision. Mr. Sondland "Hope the problems mentioned by the State Department" to prevent him from testifying "Will be resolved quickly"he said in a statement. The ambassador had "Previously agreed to be heard voluntarily, without the need for an injunction, to answer questions" commissions leading the investigation to the lower house, according to his lawyer.

For the Democrats, the ambassador's absence Tuesday morning, a "Key player" in the Ukrainian case, and the fact that he did not deliver the expected documents represent "Strong new evidence of interference with the constitutional functions of Congress"responded Adam Schiff, chairman of the powerful intelligence committee in the House of Representatives.

Gordon Sondland participated in SMS exchanges concerning Ukraine, handed over to Congress last week by former United States special envoy for Ukraine Kurt Volker, who comforted the Democrats in their suspicions. "We know that Ambassador Sondland has been a key player in the effort to get Ukraine's commitment to investigate a fallacious conspiracy theory regarding the (presidential) election of 2016 as well as Joe Biden and his son " Hunter, according to Mr. Schiff.

Article reserved for our subscribers Read also Documents fuel the suspicions of bartering between Donald Trump and his Ukrainian counterpart

Since the opening of an investigation for impeachment Donald Trump, three commissions – foreign affairs, intelligence and executive oversight – are conducting the investigation at a sustained pace, increasing hearings and injunctions, already sent to the White House, the State Department and the United States. Donald Trump's personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani.

In addition to Gordon Sondland, Marie Yovanovitch, the former US ambassador to Kiev, whom Donald Trump had criticized during his appeal, must be auditioned.

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