Updated Nov 21, 2019

Pentagon official testifies Ukraine inquired about military aid on July 25

Defense Department official Laura Cooper testified in an impeachment hearing Wednesday that members of her staff recently brought her two unclassified State Department emails revealing that the Ukrainian Embassy had asked about U.S. military aid — which had by then been suspended — on July 25.

Why it matters: July 25 is the same day of President Trump's infamous phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, though the emails from the State Department came after the morning call. Cooper's testimony suggests the Ukrainians knew there was "some kind of issue" with the security assistance by July, and that they were aware the aid had been suspended by August.

  • The surprise revelation could potentially undermine a key Republican defense that Zelensky could not have felt pressure from Trump to carry out investigations into his political rivals because the Ukrainian president was not aware of the frozen aid.

Go deeper: Live updates from the hearing

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Updated 18 mins ago - Politics & Policy

George Floyd protests: What you need to know

Photo: David Dee Delgado/Getty Images

Clashes erupted between police and protesters in several major U.S. cities Saturday night as demonstrations over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black men spread across the country.

The big picture: Floyd's death in Minneapolis police custody is the latest reminder of the disparities between black and white communities in the U.S. and comes as African Americans grapple with higher death rates from the coronavirus and higher unemployment from trying to stem its spread.

Massive demonstrations put police response to unrest in the spotlight

Washington State Police use tear gas to disperse a crowd in Seattle during a demonstration protesting the death of George Floyd. Photo: Jason Redmond/AFP via Getty Images

The response of some officers during demonstrations against police brutality in the U.S. has been criticized for being excessive by some officials and Black Lives Matter leaders.

Why it matters: The situation is tense across the U.S., with reports of protesters looting and burning buildings. While some police have responded with restraint and by monitoring the protests, others have used batons, tear gas, rubber bullets and other devices to disperse protesters and, in some cases, journalists.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

U.S. cities crack down on protesters

The scene near the 5th police precinct during a demonstration calling for justice for George Floyd in Minneapolis on Saturday. Photo: Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images

Major U.S. cities have implemented curfews and called on National Guard to mobilize as thousands of demonstrators gather across the nation to continue protesting the death of George Floyd.

The state of play: Hundreds have already been arrested as tensions continue to rise between protesters and local governments. Protesters are setting police cars on fire as freeways remain blocked and windows are shattered, per the Washington Post. Law enforcement officials are using tear gas and rubber bullets to try to disperse crowds and send protesters home.