Giuliani heads to Kiev to push for probes into pro-Clinton ‘meddling’ & firm that hired Biden’s son
Giuliani told the New York Times that he would be departing for Kiev in the “coming days.” The lawyer said that he hopes to meet with newly-elected Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to persuade him to press ahead with investigations into two cases, which may hurt President Trump’s competition during next year’s election.
One, the newspaper explains, is the claim that Ukrainian officials tried to undermine Trump’s 2016 campaign by leaking documents incriminating his then-adviser Paul Manafort. The now-jailed lobbyist worked for Ukraine’s ousted president Viktor Yanukovich before his Trump campaign gig. The new authorities in Kiev were investigating corruption in the previous government and found Manafort’s name on a ledger of alleged criminal payments.Also on rt.com US ambassador to Kiev sacked amid ‘meddling’ accusations from Ukraine’s top prosecutor
Some Ukrainian officials leaked the discovery to the US media, ostensibly hoping to win favor from Hillary Clinton, who was considered the front-runner in the election. Manafort indeed was later taken down as part of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, which discovered money laundering and tax dodging related to his job in Ukraine. There are allegations that the leak was done in coordination with the Democratic Party rather than on the initiative of the Ukrainians.
The other probe, according to NYT, may hit Trump’s likely Democratic competition in the 2020 run, Joe Biden. His son was famously hired as board member by the Ukrainian gas company Burisma Holdings in 2014, shortly after the ousting of Yanukovich. The company and its owner, a former minister under Yanukovich, faced legal troubles at the time and were investigated by the office of Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin for alleged illegal enrichment and money laundering.
Biden infamously bragged about pressuring Kiev into sacking Shokin in 2016 by threatening to withhold a $1 billion IMF loan. The optics of this, especially with Shokin now claiming that he was fired because of the probe into Burisma, may now backfire as Biden seeks the presidency.Also on rt.com Joe Biden’s past strong-arming in Ukraine is coming back to haunt him
Giuliani dismissed claims that his trip, which could be viewed as fishing for dirt on Trump’s rival, would constitute interference in the affairs of a sovereign country.
“We’re not meddling in an election, we’re meddling in an investigation, which we have a right to do,” he said, arguing that there is “nothing illegal about it.”
I’m going to give them reasons why they shouldn’t stop it because that information will be very, very helpful to my client, and may turn out to be helpful to my government.
It’s unclear if Giuliani will be able to personally make his case to Zelensky, as a meeting between the two has not yet been confirmed, he said.
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