Report: Ukraine knew about freezing of military aid before it became public

Credit: J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press

Credit: J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press

Ukraine knew the White House was freezing a $391 million military aid package weeks before the United States and Ukrainian officials acknowledged it, The New York Times reported Wednesday.

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That means the Ukrainian government was aware of the freeze during most of August, when President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, and two American diplomats were pressuring President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine to make a public announcement committing to the investigations sought by the president, the newspaper reported.

Earlier, Trump went on Twitter to quote Rep. John Ratcliffe, R-Texas, who said William B. Taylor Jr., the top United States diplomat in Ukraine -- or any other witness -- had "provided testimony that the Ukrainians were aware that military aid was being withheld."

However, information about the freeze had reached high-level officials in Ukraine by the first week of August, the Times reported.

Ukrainian officials were told that to address that information, they should reach out to Mick Mulvaney, the acting White House chief of staff, the Times reported.

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