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White House 'Violated Law' by Freezing Military Aid to Build Pressure on Ukraine: Watchdog

File photo of US President Donald Trump. (Reuters)

File photo of US President Donald Trump. (Reuters)

The House impeachment inquiry concluded that Trump's administration improperly withheld the aid as leverage in an effort to get Ukraine to open investigations that would help Trump politically.

  • PTI
  • Last Updated: January 16, 2020, 10:02 PM IST
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Washington: The White House budget office "violated the law" by freezing military aid to put political pressure on the government of Ukraine, a US congressional watchdog announced on Thursday as President Donald Trump's impeachment trial looms.

The damning report from the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office says it "issued a legal decision concluding that the Office of Management and Budget violated the law when it withheld approximately USD 214 million appropriated to DOD (Department of Defense) for security assistance to Ukraine."

The House impeachment inquiry concluded that Trump's administration improperly withheld the aid as leverage in an effort to get Ukraine to open investigations that would help Trump politically.

"OMB withheld funds for a policy reason, which is not permitted under the Impoundment Control Act," the GAO said.
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