Sep 20, 2019

Trump to meet Ukrainian president at UN amid whistleblower controversy

Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

The White House has announced President Trump's itinerary for next week at the UN General Assembly, and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is among the world leaders with whom Trump is slated to meet.

Why it matters: Ukraine is reportedly at the center of a whistleblower's concerns over Trump's contacts with a foreign leader, the Washington Post and New York Times reported. While little is known about the whistleblower complaint, Trump spoke with Zelensky two weeks before the issue was raised in August. Per the Post, Trump made a "promise" that troubled a member of the intelligence community.

A senior administration official said that in Wednesday's meeting, Trump would congratulate Zelensky on his election victory and his "energy and success" thus far in tackling corruption, while raising "his concerns about predatory Chinese economic activity in Ukraine."

  • Trump's agenda also includes meetings with the leaders of Pakistan, Poland, New Zealand, Singapore, Egypt, South Korea, the U.K., India, Iraq and El Salvador.
  • He'll host a summit Monday on religious freedom, while skipping a major UN gathering that day on climate change.
  • Administration officials on Friday's briefing call said that in his UN speech, Trump would present the U.S. as an alternative to authoritarianism, while stressing his "commitment to upholding democracy and protecting religious freedom."

Go deeper ... Read: Intelligence watchdog's letters about "urgent" whistleblower complaint

Go deeper

Report: Whistleblower complaint involves Trump's push to investigate Biden

Trump walks to the Oval Office on Sept. 20. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Trump’s reported request for Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden is part of a secret whistleblower complaint over an alleged "promise" made between the president and an unnamed foreign leader, the New York Times reports.

The big picture: Many details about the whistleblower report, "submitted by a member of the intelligence community," per the Times, are still unknown. The Trump administration "has not shared the complaint with Congress, as is generally required by law," the Times reports.

Go deeperArrowSep 20, 2019

Trump's defiance on Ukraine

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

President Trump is pushing the limits on how much Congress will tolerate of a president using his office to target political rivals.

Why it matters: Ukraine is reportedly at the center of a whistleblower's concerns over Trump's contact with a foreign leader, the WashPost and N.Y. Times report.

Go deeperArrowSep 20, 2019

Trump to meet Ukraine's Zelensky at UN amid impeachment frenzy

Photos: Ludovic Marin, Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump is set to meet face to face with President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine for the first time today at the UN General Assembly — right as the House is launching an impeachment inquiry around his July phone call with Zelensky.

What to watch: A senior White House official told reporters Trump will congratulate Zelensky on his election win and his “energy and success” so far on anti-corruption reforms. Trump will also raise trade and “his concerns about what he sees as some predatory Chinese economic activity in Ukraine,” the official said.

Go deeperArrowSep 25, 2019