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25 Sep, 2019 16:39

Only person who can pressure me is my 6yo son, not Trump, says Zelensky

Only person who can pressure me is my 6yo son, not Trump, says Zelensky

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky brushed off allegations that he was pressured by US President Donald Trump over Joe Biden in their July 25 phone call, saying the only person who can pressure him is his six-year-old son.

When President Zelensky arrived to New York to take part in the UN General Assembly, he landed right in the epicentre of the latest political earthquake that eventually unfolded into an impeachment inquiry against Trump.

Democrats have been accusing Trump of pressuring Zelensky to investigate 2020 candidate Joe Biden’s son Hunter and his business dealings in Ukraine for a while now. However, on Tuesday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced a formal impeachment inquiry over the Ukraine scandal, marking her own shift from resisting impeachment to advocating for it.

Asked by a Russian journalist if he had or hadn’t been pressured by Trump, Zelensky said: “No one is able to put pressure on me, since I am the president of an independent country. The only person in the world who has this power is my six-year-old son”.

Also on rt.com US Justice Dept releases much-anticipated summary of Trump’s call with Ukrainian president

Media and Democrats claim military aid to Ukraine was the main tool that Trump reportedly used in an attempt to manipulate the Ukrainian president. Trump denies the accusations. “No, I didn’t,” he said on Monday, when asked whether he told Zelensky that Ukraine would only get the aid if he launches an investigation into Biden’s son.

The US State Department released the summary of the call between the two on Wednesday and it does indeed show Trump urged Zelensky to look into the case of Biden who forced a halt to the investigation against the Ukrainian natural gas company his son worked for as a paid board member.

On Wednesday, Trump and Zelensky are due to hold their first face-to-face meeting on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly. Former US vice-president and 2020 Democratic presidential hopeful Biden threatened to withhold $1 billion in US loan guarantees if Kiev refused to fire Ukraine’s top prosecutor Viktor Shokin in 2016.

Shokin was investigating the Ukrainian gas company Burisma Holdings who had Hunter Biden among its board members, and lost his job promptly after Biden’s ultimatum. Biden later boasted about his own manipulating skills: “I looked at them and said: ‘I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money.’ Well, son of a bitch. (Laughter.) He got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid at the time.”

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