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Defense inspectors general do not probe the delay in aid of Ukraine



The decision was made out of concern that such a probe could duplicate or interfere with the impeachment inquiry that took place in the House of Representatives, according to a letter sent to senators on Wednesday.

A spokesman for the Defense Department inspector confirmed that they had sent a letter to several top Democratic senators regarding the decision but noted that "as circumstances change our decision may change."

Democrats requesting review express their frustration

"We are disappointed that the Defense Department's Office of the Inspector General has refused to investigate the Defense Department's delay in delaying the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative provided by Congress , "Sen said. Dick Durbin, an Illinois Democrat, said in a statement.

He and several other leading Democrats wrote to the general inspector general in September asking him to investigate the delay, citing concerns that "it would appear to hinder the law contained in Department law security assistance to Ukraine at a critical moment and raises serious questions about whether DoD officials are involved in any scheme to target a political opponent. "

" As a result, it is necessary that your office will pursue a thorough review of the DoD's potential role in these allegations, and present your findings to congressional defense committees in a timely manner, "Durbin wrote in a letter to the Inspector's acting General Glenn Fine.

News that the Trump administration held Ukraine's aid surfaced in late August, and the circumstances surrounding that decision were considered part of the House Democratic impeachment inquiry to President Donald Trump.

The Democratic House conducting an impeachment investigation argued that the President had attempted to use the aid as a seizure while forcing Ukraine to investigate local political rivals, evidence, they say, of a quid pro quo .

The White House offered changing and vague accounts of why the hold was implemented and what prompted Trump to finally change course and release the money.

What is clear, however, is that in the days leading up to Trump's decision to provide assistance, there was a confirmation of important events. National security adviser John Bolton was fired the day before the President released and White House officials recently found out about a whistleblower complaint filed regarding the conduct of Trump to Ukraine.
  Guardian Congress in Congress. review of the Trump administration & # 39; s freeze on aid to Ukraine

Administration officials have tried to pin down the delay in government bureaucracy. They point to reviews by national security agencies and another Office of Management and Budget to ensure funds are properly spent. But detailed reviews were conducted before the funds were frozen in June. And there is little indication that any such process has occurred after freezing.

Laura Cooper, the Pentagon's assistant superintendent for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia, told lawmakers behind closed doors last month that she met US Special Envoy after Ukraine's Kurt Volker in August to discuss holding the aid.

He claimed that Volker had told him at their meeting that he was trying to increase the hold by having Ukrainians deliver a public statement that they would launch investigations that Trump was seeking.

A congressional watchdog group announced last month that it was conducting a review to determine whether the Trump administration violated appropriation by stopping funds.

The Office of Government Accountability began the review after Sen. Chris Van Hollen, a Maryland Democrat, asked the US comptroller if the administration violated the law by holding funds until "the last minute" and failing to inform Congress of the decision, according to office spokesman Charles Young.

CNN & Ryan Browne contributed to this report.


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