Jan 22, 2020

BuzzFeed: Pompeo to meet with Ukraine's Zelensky next week

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will travel to Ukraine on Jan. 31 to meet with President Volodymyr Zelensky, BuzzFeed News reported Wednesday, citing three diplomatic sources with knowledge of Pompeo's schedule.

Why it matters: It's the first time a member of the U.S. cabinet will meet Zelensky since the House voted to impeach President Trump on charges that he sought to pressure his Ukrainian counterpart to announce investigations into his political rivals.

  • Trump and Zelensky met personally at the United Nations in September, a day after Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that the House would begin an impeachment inquiry.
  • The meeting between Pompeo and Zelensky will almost certainly take place at the same as the Senate impeachment trial.

The big picture: It is not clear what the pair will discuss, but sources described the meeting as "substantive and not simply a drop-in," BuzzFeed reports. The meeting would mark a show of support for Ukraine as Zelensky continues to seek an end to the country's six-year war with Russia.

  • The State Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Go deeper: Ukraine, Russian-backed rebels swap prisoners in step toward ending war

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Senators to meet with Zelensky weeks after impeachment acquittal

Photo: Antonio Masiello/Getty Images.

A bipartisan group of senators that includes Sens. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) announced in a statement Wednesday that they will meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Kiev on Friday.

Why it matters: The meeting will come less than two weeks after President Trump was acquitted of impeachment charges that alleged he withheld military aid to Ukraine in order to pressure Zelensky into investigating his political rivals.

Go deeperArrowFeb 12, 2020 - World

Ukrainian president says he's "ready for next call" with Trump

Trump and Zelensky on Sept. 25. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky told CNN on Saturday that he's "ready for [the] next call with Mr. Trump" if working with the U.S. and the president will help his country.

Why it matters: The July 25 call between Zelensky and Trump led House Democrats to launch a formal impeachment inquiry, after a whistleblower complaint from the intelligence community alleged that Trump "sought to pressure the Ukrainian leader to take actions to help the President's 2020 reelection bid."

Trump denies Bolton book allegations that Ukraine aid was tied to Bidens

President Trump speaks during a meeting as then-national security adviser John Bolton listens. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump strongly denied early Monday allegations his former national security adviser John Bolton reportedly made in an upcoming book that the holdup of aid to Ukraine was tied to demands for investigations into his political opponent Joe Biden.

What he's saying: "I NEVER told John Bolton that the aid to Ukraine was tied to investigations into Democrats, including the Bidens. In fact, he never complained about this at the time of his very public termination. If John Bolton said this, it was only to sell a book," Trump said on Twitter.

Go deeperArrowJan 27, 2020