17:37 GMT19 February 2020
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    US national security adviser Alexander Vindman, who testified in US President Donald Trump's impeachment trial, was escorted out of the White House Friday afternoon, his lawyer David Pressman revealed in a statement.

    Pressman noted in the release that Vindman was "asked to leave for telling the truth."

    ​"Today, Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman was escorted out of the White House where he has dutifully served his country and his President. He does so having spoken publicly once, and only pursuant to a subpoena from the United States Congress," reads the statement. "There is no question in the mind of any American why this man's job is over, why this country now has one less soldier serving it at the White House."

    "His honor, his commitment to right, frightened the powerful. ... The truth has cost LTC Alexander Vindman his job, hes career, and his privacy. He did what any member of our military is charged with doing every day: he followed orders, he obeyed his oath, and he served his country even when doing to so was fraught with danger and personal peril. And for that, the most powerful man in the world - buoyed by the silent, the pliable, and the complicit - has decided to exact revenge," it continues. 

    The development comes hours after Trump told reporters as he was preparing to board Marine One that he was "not happy with [Vindman]," and that he was going to leave it up to White House officials to decide on whether Vindman would be departing the administration.

    Prior to Vindman's dismissal, when asked about Vindman's status, US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper told reporters that "we protect all of our persons, service members from retribution or anything, anything like that."

    According to several White House reporters, Vindman's twin brother, Yevgeny, was also escorted from the grounds. He served as a senior lawyer on the National Security Council. 

    Vindman was one of four officials who testified on November 19 as part of impeachment proceedings launched against Trump over his July 2019 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Trump's monthslong impeachment trial came to a close on Wednesday after the US Senate found the commander in chief not guilty on both articles of impeachment: abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.


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