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Department of State officials testify that John Bolton warns about Rudy Giuliani's influence on Ukraine



Christopher Anderson, who was former Special Envoy for Ukraine Assistant to Kurt Volker from 2017-2019, is one of two State Department employees assigned to testify behind closed doors as part of the House Ukraine impeachment investigation Wednesday. Catherine Croft is also expected to take on this role in the summer of 2019.

Volker, as well as a number of other State Department employees, already testify as part of the study. No witnesses are expected to find a treasure trove of details that will change the trajectory of the investigation, but their testimony is expected to provide context for how the policies of the US-Ukraine administration have evolved and confirm details that have already been provided.

According to prepared statements by Anderson, he helped develop "key results" in May to show newly elected Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky "a commitment to reform." enhancing US-Ukrainian energy cooperation and 3) improving our bilateral security relationship, which includes Ukraine increasing its purchases of key US military equipment. "

In mid-June," Bolton stated that he agreed with our three lines of efforts and that he also supported the White House's enhanced commitment, "according to a prepared statement. [1

9659005]" However, he warned that n Giuliani is a key voice with the president for Ukraine, which could be an obstacle to enhanced White House engagement, "Anderson is expected to tell the House Intelligence, Surveillance and Foreign Affairs Committees.

Bolton considered one of the key witnesses, was linked by the deposit committees. It is unclear whether or not

CNN previously reported that Trump had ordered Volker and other senior US officials to deal with his personal layer on Ukraine-related issues, including the desire of the Ukrainian president for a White Summit

Witnesses to the impeachment trial testify to Giuliani's huge influence on Ukraine's politics, including insisting on an investigation into the work of former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden ma. There is no evidence of wrongdoing in Ukraine.

During his testimony in early October, Volker appears as a supporter of US support for Ukraine, but he realizes the reality that Giuliani will have to be part of everything if he is to succeed, according to those familiar with his testimony .

Croft, who also served on the National Security Council as director of Ukraine from July 2017 to July 2018, will also shine a light on the pressure coming from Giuliani's external allies to oust Marie Jovanwotch, now former US ambassador to Ukraine, earlier than known earlier.

"During my time at the NSC, I received a lot of calls from lobbyist Robert Livingston, who told me that Ambassador Jovanovic should be fired," Croft said. "He described Ambassador Jovanovic as" Obama's arrest "and contacted George Soros. At the time, it was unclear to me – on whose behalf or on whose behalf Mr Livingston was seeking to remove Ambassador Jovanovic." [19659007] Livingston's lobbying firm has worked for Ukrainian politician Yulia Tymoshenko, a top but unsuccessful candidate in the country's recent elections, according to her federal foreign lobbying discovery. In December 2018, Livingston Group revealed that it was acquainted with Julian.

It is not known whether Livingston's calls to the NSK were in any way related to his job as a Ukrainian official or his firm's contact with Julian.

When called by CNN on Tuesday evening, Livingston said he was unaware of the witness's statement regarding his opposition to Jovanovic, and declined to explain why he made the calls.

"I have no reason. I'm not going to talk about it. I don't know anything about it," he said, then hung up the phone.

Croft also plans to detail the video conference on July 18, where the Office of Management and the Budget Officer stated that acting chief of staff and office manager Mick Mulvani had placed "unofficial detention" on security assistance in Ukraine.

"The only reason was that the order came at the behest of the president," Croft is expected. She is also expected to announce to the commissions that she has heard before, but does not remember exactly when she learned about it. The best US diplomat in Ukraine, Bill Taylor, was also on this teleconference and told MPs during his deposition that he "sat surprised" when he heard the news.

Neither Croft nor Anderson had a telephone conversation on July 25 when Trump pressured his Ukrainian counterpart to investigate Biden.

Anderson's testimony will also reveal that the Trump administration blocked a statement condemning Russian aggression against Ukraine – which was prepared by the State Department – in November 2018. It came after Russia seized Ukrainian warships in the Azov Sea. The incident was a major escalation between the two former Soviet states. Russia seizes three Ukrainian naval vessels and detains 24 Ukrainian sailors as part of the incident.

"While my State Department counterparts quickly prepared a statement condemning Russia for its escalation, senior White House officials blocked its release," Anderson plans to say. "Ambassador Volker has tweeted condemning the actions of Russia that I posted on his account."

Mark McDougal, the lawyer who represents both witnesses, plans to introduce his clients to the Chamber's investigators.

McDougal will tell the committees that none of his clients is the offender. He will also emphasize that Anderson and Croft will not answer questions about the offender's identity.

"As the Committee is well aware, government status and related provisions allow signalers to remain anonymous," McDougal told MPs

who has been in foreign service since 2005, he also plans to say he and his colleagues are "non-partisan."

Trump repeatedly annoyed witnesses appearing before congressional committees such as "never labor" and "scum people." Many witnesses, including Anderson and Croft, are widely respected diplomats who have served ka who in both the Republican and Democratic administrations.

CNN's Katelin Pollanz contributed to this report.


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