Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelensky would like President Donald Trump to lay off the trash talk, please.
During an interview with CNN correspondent Christine Amanpour on Saturday, Zelensky expressed dismay over Trump’s repeated claims that Ukraine is “corrupt”; a claim that Trump invokes when defending his withholding of U.S. military aid to the Eastern European country.
“That’s not true. That’s not true,” the Ukrainian president responded when Amanpour brought up Trump’s comments.
Zelensky said that he was “very open” with Trump about the issue when they met at the U.N. in September.
“I told him that we fight this corruption,” said Zelensky. “We fight with this, fight each day.”
“But please, please stop saying Ukraine is corrupted country, because from now [sic], it’s not true,” he added. “We want to change this image.”
Nevertheless, Zelensky told Amanpour that he “ready” for another call with Trump.
Through Trump has cited “corruption” as the reason for the aid freeze and refusal to meet with Zelensky in the White House, the impeachment investigation revealed that Trump cared little about cracking down on corruption and that he just wanted Ukraine to announce an investigation into 2020 candidate Joe Biden in exchange for the aid and White House meeting.
Though the aid was eventually released under the House’s scrutiny, Trump has still not invited Zelensky to a meeting.
Watch Zelensky below:
Ukrainian President Zelensky rejects President Trump’s claim that Ukraine is corrupt and tells CNN’s @camanpour that he is ready for another phone call with Trump. https://t.co/Zc7dp0wbrH pic.twitter.com/QxPq3z5gNB
— CNN (@CNN) February 15, 2020