NewsNational News


Former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine to testify at impeachment hearing

Posted at 5:35 AM, Nov 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-15 09:34:37-05

The former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine who was recalled from her post earlier this year after a "smear campaign" led by Rudy Giuliani will testify Friday in the second public hearing in the impeachment inquiry.

Live coverage begins at 7 a.m. Click here to watch the hearing live.

Yovanovitch was removed as ambassador in May after Giuliani and other Trump allies attacked her in television appearances and on Twitter, claiming she was disloyal to the Trump administration. In closed-door testimony in October, she told lawmakers that Giuliani worked in tandem with Yuriy Lutsenko, a former prosecutor in Ukraine, to allege she was standing in the way of investigations into supposed Ukrainian interference in the 2016 campaign and Burisma, the energy company that had employed Hunter Biden, the former vice president's son.

Although her Ukraine tour was supposed to end in 2020, in late April she was "abruptly told" to return to Washington "on the next plane." She did not know why she was being recalled and met with the deputy secretary of state, who told her Mr. Trump "had lost confidence" in her "and no longer wished me to serve as his ambassador." The secretary also told her there had been "a concerted campaign against" her, and there had been pressure to remove her since 2018.

Yovanovitch was also mentioned in Mr. Trump's July 25 call with the president of Ukraine. The president said she was "bad news" and "going to go through some things," according to the White House summary of the call.

Her removal and treatment by the administration rankled many officials in the State Department, one of whom resigned in September over the secretary of state's failure to publicly defend her.