September 24, 2019 / 1:06 PM / a month ago

Senior U.S. lawmaker demands investigation of Trump's withholding of Ukraine funds

WASHINGTON, Sept 24 (Reuters) - A senior U.S. senator demanded on Tuesday an investigation of the Trump administration’s withholding of millions of dollars in aid for Ukraine, as congressional Democrats worked to increase pressure on the president.

Senator Bob Menendez, the top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said Congress had not been made aware of any substantive review of security assistance to Ukraine or any policy reason the funds should have been withheld.

In a letter to Mike Mulvaney, director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, Menendez said “it is becoming clear that” Trump put pressure on Ukrainian officials.

And he said, in one of three letters sent to administration officials, “we must immediately understand whether, and to what extent, the President and his team converted duly-appropriated United States foreign assistance funds for his personal and political benefit, and what role federal agencies may have played in it.” (Reporting by Patricia Zengerle, Editing by William Maclean)

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