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Transcript of Fiona Hill’s testimony in impeachment inquiry released

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  • The transcript from the testimony of President Donald Trump’s former top adviser on Russia was released on Friday by House investigators leading the impeachment inquiry into the president. 
  • Fiona Hill’s testimony presented a damning picture of a shadow effort to pressure Ukraine into launching investigations desired by Trump. 
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The transcript of testimony from Fiona Hill, the former top adviser on Russia in the Trump administration, was released on Friday by House investigators leading the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump. 

Hill, who previously served as a senior director for Russian and Eurasian affairs before stepping down in August, testified before House lawmakers in mid-October. 

Her testimony presented a damning picture of a shadow effort to pressure Ukraine into launching investigations into former Vice President Joe Biden, and a conspiracy theory linked to the 2016 presidential election.

Upon the release of the transcript, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff tweeted: “This is first-hand testimony on how the levers of government were abused to help the president politically, at the cost of our national security.”

Some of the biggest takeaways from Hill’s testimony: 

  • Hill’s former boss, former National Security Adviser John Bolton, was not interested in getting involved in the president’s efforts to urge Ukraine to launch certain investigations.
    • According to Hill, Bolton did not initially realize the extent to which Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, was involved in matters pertaining to Ukraine.
    • She said: “I asked my, you know, direct superior Ambassador Bolton if he was aware of Mr. Giuliani being given some direct taskings related to Ukraine, and he was not aware of this.”
    • Hill said Bolton described Giuliani as a “hand grenade that is going to blow everybody up.”  
  • The removal of Maria Yovanovitch as US ambassador to Ukraine was a “result of the campaign that Mr. Giuliani had set in motion.”
    • Hill said there was “no basis” for Yovanovitch’s removal as the top US diplomat to Ukraine.
    • She referred to Yovanovitch’s removal as “dispiriting” and a result of a smear campaign Giuliani had “set in motion.” 
    • Speaking on Giuliani’s efforts to discredit Yovanovitch, Hill said: “He had created an atmosphere in which she was under great suspicion, and it was obvious that she would lose the confidence of senior people because these accusations seem to stick to people even when they’re proved not to be true.”
    • Bolton had a “pained” reaction to Giuliani’s efforts to undermine Yovanovitch. 

This article will continue to be updated.

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