08:32 GMT +310 December 2019
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    US Official David Holmes to Publicly Testify Thursday Alongside Fiona Hill

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    The House Intelligence Committee announced Monday evening that David Holmes, an aide to the US envoy to Ukraine, William Taylor, would testify before the committee publicly on Thursday. Last week, Holmes revealed he had overheard a July phone call between US President Donald Trump and US ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland.

    The House committee leading the impeachment inquiry into Trump over a July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskky and the possibility Trump illegally twisted Kiev's arm to investigate a political rival announced Monday that Holmes would testify publicly on Thursday. On Saturday, Holmes revealed to the committee in a private deposition details about a call between Trump and Sondland the day after the Zelenskyy call that Taylor had not provided them.

    According to the Washington Post, in the closed-doors deposition on Friday, Holmes contradicted Sondland by telling lawmakers the EU envoy did, in fact, know that the investigation sought by Trump and his lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, concerned the Biden family.

    In 2016, former US Vice President Joe Biden forced Kiev to fire its special prosecutor, ending an anti-corruption probe into gas company Burisma Holdings, on the board of which Biden's son, Hunter Biden, sat at the time. Trump wanted the Ukrainian government to reopen that investigation as the former vice president begins his own bid for the presidency in the 2020 US elections on the Democratic ticket.

    House Democrats are chasing suspicions that Trump tried to force a beginning to this probe by withholding military aid from Kiev - a supposition that grows increasingly likely, given the wealth of testimony by officials involved that such a "quid pro quo" was sought.

    Sondland is due to testify publicly on Wednesday morning, and Holmes' testimony will follow that of Fiona Hill, a senior adviser on the National Security Council who specializes in Russian and European affairs.
    inquiry, impeachment, phone call, testify
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