US diplomat: President Donald Trump more bothered about probe against Joe Biden than Ukraine

Updated: Nov 15, 2019, 13:15 IST | Agencies | Washington

United States diplomat in Ukraine, William B Taylor Jr. says his aide told him of a phone conversation Trump had with Gordon Sondland, the US ambassador to the EU on July 26

Top US diplomat in Ukraine William Taylor (right) and George Kent (left), the deputy assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian Affairs testify during the House Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Pic/ AFP
Top US diplomat in Ukraine William Taylor (right) and George Kent (left), the deputy assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian Affairs testify during the House Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Pic/ AFP

Washington: William B Taylor Jr., the top US diplomat in Ukraine and one of the most important witnesses for the Democrats' impeachment procedure against Donald Trump, on Wednesday claimed that the President cared more about an investigation of former vice-president Joe Biden than he did about Ukraine.

The testimony from Taylor before the Committee provided new details about the President's personal involvement in the push for Ukraine to open investigations into his political rivals as Democrats began public impeachment hearings that could lead to the House voting to impeach a president for just the third time in US history, CNN reported.

Taylor testified that his aide told him of a phone conversation Trump had with Gordon Sondland, the US ambassador to the European Union (EU), on July 26, a day after Trump's phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Taylor's aide, who was accompanying Sondland to meetings in Kiev with the Ukrainian officials, could hear Trump asking Sondland about the investigations, Taylor told the House Committee. Sondland "told President Trump that the Ukrainians were ready to move forward," Taylor said. Taylor testified that his aide later asked Sondland what Trump thought of Ukraine. "Ambassador Sondland responded that President Trump cares more about the investigations of Biden, which Trump's personal attorney Rudy Giuliani was pressing for," Taylor added. 

'Impeachment probe a sham'

US President Donald Trump has said that the impeachment proceedings against him in the Democratic-led House of Representatives are a "sham and should not be allowed." "This is a sham and shouldn't be allowed. It was a situation that was caused by people that shouldn't have allowed it to happen," Trump told the media at the White House during a joint press conference with the visiting Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

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