A July 25 phone call, in which U.S. President Donald Trump asked Ukraine‘s president Volodymyr Zeleneskiy for information on former U.S. vice-president and Democratic candidate Joe Biden, is at the centre of a fast-moving impeachment inquiry announced last month.
The call is also the focus of a complaint filed by an unnamed whistleblower — released last week — which alleges Trump attempted to seek foreign assistance in digging up dirt on his political foes ahead of the 2020 presidential election.
The whistleblower expressed “deep concern” that the alleged acts constituted a “serious flagrant problem, abuse, or violation of law or executive order” and said they should be met with “urgent concern.”
Late 2018 – Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani speaks to former Ukrainian prosecutor general Viktor Shokin via Skype. Shokin, widely accused of corruption, had been removed from his job in 2016.
Late January 2019 – Giuliani meets with then-Ukrainian prosecutor general Yuriy Lutsenko in New York, according to a Bloomberg report.
Mid-February – Giuliani meets with Lutsenko again, this time in Warsaw, according to the whistleblower complaint.
Late March – Lutsenko and other Ukrainian officials begin publishing series of articles on Washington website The Hill, alleging that their political rivals had worked with the Democratic National Committee and U.S. Embassy in Kiev to interfere in the 2016 presidential election, and that Biden had pressured the former Ukrainian president to fire a prosecutor looking into a gas company connected with his son, Hunter.
April 18 – Special Counsel Robert Mueller releases his findings from the Russia investigation.
April 21 – Volodymyr Zelenskiy defeats incumbent Petro Poroshenko in Ukraine’s presidential election. Trump congratulates Zelenskiy in a phone call.
May 6 – The U.S State Department announces ambassador to Ukraine Masha Yovanovitch would end her assignment in Kiev. Democratic lawmakers slam the move, saying it is politically motivated.
May 9 – The New York Times reports Giuliani plans to travel to Ukraine to press the government to investigate interference in 2016 election and the Biden family. Giuliani later cancels the trip, claiming Zelenskiy was “surrounded by enemies” of Trump.
May 14 – In a published interview with a Ukrainian journalist, Giuliani says Yovanovitch had been removed because she had been working against Trump.
Sometime around May 14 – Energy Secretary Rick Perry leads U.S. delegation to Zelenskiy’s inauguration after Trump tells Vice-President Mike Pence to cancel plans.
Mid-May – The whistleblower hears from multiple officials that Kurt Volker, the U.S. special representative to Ukraine, and Gordon Sondland, U.S. ambassador to the European Union, had spoken with Giuliani to try to “contain the damage” from his efforts. Volker and Sondland also met with Zelenskiy’s administration to talk about the issues.
May 20 – Zelenskiy is inaugurated as the new president of Ukraine.
June 21 – Giuliani tweets, criticizing Zelenskiy for being “silent on investigation of Ukrainian interference in 2016 election and alleged Biden bribery of Pres Poroshenko.” He calls for an investigation.
Sometime in July – Trump instructs the White House to suspend all U.S. security assistance to Ukraine.
July 12 – Trump tells ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulis that he would take damaging information against his 2020 political rivals from foreign adversaries.
July 24 – Robert Mueller testifies before Congress on his team’s findings from the Russia investigation.
July 25 – Trump has a phone call with Zelenskiy and asks him to look into a Ukrainian investigation in connection with Hunter Biden.
The Ukrainian government confirmed the call took place, saying Trump congratulated Zelenskiy for his election victory.
July 26 – Volker and Sondland meet with Zelenskiy and other Ukrainian political figures and “reportedly provided advice to the Ukrainian leadership about how to ‘navigate’ the demands that the president had made,” according to the whistleblower report.
Aug. 2 – Giuliani meets Zelenskiy’s advisor Andriy Yernak in what the whistleblower alleges was a “follow-up” to the phone call on July 25.
Aug. 12 – The whistleblower delivers the complaint to chairmen of the House Intelligence Committee, Adam Schiff and the and Senate Intelligence Committee, Richard Burr.
Sept. 13 – Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee Adam Schiff issues a subpoena to Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire for the whistleblower complaint.
Sept. 17 – Ukrainian Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko tweets, saying he spoke on the phone with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
“Spoke today with U.S. Secretary of state Secretary Pompeo. Thanked for unwavering support for our sovereignty and territorial integrity as well as for our critical reforms,” Prystaiko wrote. “Looking forward to our meeting during UN General Assembly next week.”
Sept. 18 – The Washington Post publishes first public account about the whistleblower complaint.
Sept. 22- Trump tells reporters that he discussed former vice-president Joe Biden with Ukraine’s president during a call in July.
“We had a great conversation,” he told reporters outside the White House. “The conversation I had was largely congratulatory, was largely corruption — all of the corruption taking place, was largely the fact that we don’t want our people like Vice-President Biden and his son (adding to the corruption.)”
Sept. 24 – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announces Trump impeachment inquiry, saying “no one is above the law.”
Trump tweets, saying the White House will release a transcript of the call with the Ukrainian president. He rebuffs the impeachment probe, calling it a “witch hunt” and “PRESIDENTIAL HARRASSMENT” on Twitter.
Schiff, in a tweet, says the whistleblower will testify by the end of the week.
Sept. 25 – The U.S. Justice Department releases a summary of the July 25 call between Trump and Zelenskiy. A memo of the call released by the White House shows Trump asking Zeleneskiy to “look into” the investigation into Hunter Biden.
“There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the attorney general would be great,” the phone call summary reads.
Zelenskiy tells Trump he would appoint the next top prosecutor and that “he or she will look into the situation.”
Sept. 26 – The U.S. House Intelligence Committee releases an unclassified version of the whistleblower complaint. It alleges Trump tried to “solicit interference from a foreign country” to boost his chances at re-election.
In the nine-page report, the whistleblower offers details provided by “more than half a dozen U.S. officials” alleging Trump attempted to seek foreign interference to dig up dirt his political adversaries.
The whistleblower expressed “deep concern” and said the complaint should be met with “urgent concern.”
Meanwhile, Trump and Zelenskiy meet at the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
Sept. 27 – House Democrats issue a subpoena to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for documents pertaining to the Ukraine call.
They also send a separate letter notifying Pompeo that they have scheduled depositions for five former and current State Department officials to be held between Oct. 2 and Oct. 10.
Yovanovitch, Volker, Deputy Assistant Secretary George Kent, Counselor T. Ulrich Brechbuhl and Ambassador Gordon Sondland are named.
Sept. 29 – Trump tweets, saying he deserves to meet his accuser, in reference to the whistleblower.
Sept. 30 – Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani is subpoenaed by House Democrats for documents regarding the Ukraine investigation.
Oct. 1 – Trump tweets, calling the impeachment inquiry a “COUP.”
Pompeo sends a letter to the House Foreign Affairs Committee, saying the Democrats are using the impeachment probe to “intimidate, bully and treat improperly” State Department officials.
He says he will “not tolerate such tactics,” and will use “all means” at his disposal to prevent or expose the attempts.
Oct. 2 – U.S. Secretary of state Mike Pompeo confirms he was on July 25 call between Trump and Zelenskiy.
— With files from Rachael D’Amore and Reuters