Feb 12, 2020 - World

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.

  • The senators say they are meeting with Zelensky to emphasize that "the U.S.-Ukraine relationship is as important now as ever."
  • "The future of Ukraine matters to the United States and we must make sure Ukraine knows that we view them as a strategic ally," the group added.

Driving the news: The meeting also comes days after Attorney General Bill Barr said that the Justice Department had set up an "intake process" for Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani to feed information he had gathered about the Bidens in Ukraine. Giuliani's efforts in Ukraine, which came under scrutiny during impeachment, are reportedly still ongoing.

  • Murphy told Politico in an interview that he plans to discuss Giuliani with Zelensky: “I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn't raise the danger of Giuliani’s continued overtures in Ukraine," he said. "So I'm sure that we will talk about the need to keep U.S.-Ukraine policy separated in the 2020 election.

Go deeper: Zelensky says Trump should not have blocked aid: "We're at war"

Go deeper

Justice Department says U.S. attorneys are reviewing Ukraine information

Rudy Giuliani. Photo: Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd sent a letter to House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) Tuesday informing him that the U.S. attorneys for the Eastern District of New York and the Western District of Pennsylvania are reviewing "unsolicited" information from the public related to matters involving Ukraine.

Why it matters: Nadler had requested an explanation for the "intake process" that Attorney General Bill Barr stated had been set up in order to receive information that Rudy Giuliani had obtained about the Bidens in Ukraine.

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."

Hackers use Rudy Giuliani's Twitter typos to spread malware

Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Hackers are using misspelled links in Rudy Giuliani's tweets to spread malware, CNET reports.

Why it matters: Giuliani, the former New York mayor and President Trump's personal lawyer, has more than 650,000 Twitter followers — including politicians, journalists and Trump Organization members — all of whom could unknowingly click an incorrect link that exposes them to malware.