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Trump pushed Ukraine to investigate Biden's son - report

  • 20 Sep 2019

US President Donald Trump reportedly urged the new leader of Ukraine this summer to investigate the son of former Vice President Joe Biden.

Family members gather for a road naming ceremony with US Vice President Joe Biden, centre, his son Hunter Biden, left, and his sister Valerie Biden Owens, right, joined by other family members during a ceremony to name a national road after his late son Joseph R. "Beau" Biden III, in the village of Sojevo, Kosovo. August 17, 2016. ( Visar Kryeziu / AP )

US President Donald Trump repeatedly pressured his Ukrainian counterpart to investigate Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s son, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.

Citing people familiar with the matter, the newspaper said Trump urged Volodymyr Zelensky in a phone call in July "about eight times to work with Rudy Giuliani, his personal lawyer, on a probe" into Hunter Biden.

According a source speaking to the Journal, the US president did not mention a provision of foreign aid to Ukraine on the call. That person also said that the Trump lawyer met with senior Ukrainian officials about the prospect of an investigation.

House Democrats are reportedly looking into whether the US president sought to benefit from information that can harm Biden and help Trump's re-election campaign.

Giuliani claimed the former vice president worked to safeguard a Ukrainian gas company linked to his son.

Hours before the report, Trump backed his phone call with the Ukrainian leader, calling it "totally appropriate."

Speaking to reporters at Oval Office, Trump did not respond to questions about if he had discussed Biden with the Ukrainian leader, and said: "It doesn’t matter what I discussed."

"Someone ought to look into Joe Biden," Trump said.

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