US President Donald Trump speaks to the press aboard Air Force One before addressing a rally in Melbourne, Florida, on February 18, 2017.
NICHOLAS KAMM / AFP
President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer has given him a peace plan for Ukraine drawn up by non-diplomats, and which has outraged officials in Kiev, The New York Times reported on Sunday.
The report comes after the Times reported senior Trump aides were in regular contact with Russian intelligence during the US presidential campaign. US intelligence say Russia meddled in the US campaign at least partly to support Trump.
The attorney, Michael Cohen, is seen as someone Trump turns to with tough problems, and not a diplomat; Cohen however is married to a Ukrainian, the report said.
Meanwhile, Andrii Artemenko, the Ukrainian lawmaker, “claims to have evidence — ‘names of companies, wire transfers’ — showing corruption by the Ukrainian president, Petro Poroshenko, that could help oust him. And Mr Artemenko said he had received encouragement for his plans from top aides to Mr Putin,” the report said.
While Artemenko was described as seeing “in Mr Trump an opportunity to advocate a plan for peace in Ukraine,” Kiev was having nothing of it.
Ukrainian ambassador to the United States Valeriy Chaly, rejected a lease of that kind.
“It is a gross violation of the Constitution,” The Times quoted him as saying in written responses to its questions.
“Such ideas can be pitched or pushed through only by those openly or covertly representing Russian interests.”
Cohen, who lives in a Trump building in Manhattan, has been with the Trump Organization as special counsel since 2007.