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Volker Prepared Remarks for Testimony before House Committees Whistleblower Complaint on Ukraine (Kelly Smith, comp.) 1 (10/3/2019)

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        Testimony before the House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs,
          Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and Committee on Oversight

                                    Amb. Kurt Volker
                 Former U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations

                                     October 3, 2019


Thank you very much for the opportunity to provide this testimony today.

Allow me to begin by stressing that you and the American people can be reassured and proud
that the Department of State and the Department of Defense, and the professionals working
there-civil and foreign service and military-have conducted themselves with the highest
degree of professionalism, integrity, and dedication to the national interest. That is a
testament to the strength of our people, our institutions, and our country.

As a former member of the Senior Foreign Service, and in conducting my role as U.S. Special
Representative for Ukraine Negotiations, I have similarly acted solely to advance U.S. national
interests, which included supporting democracy and reform in Ukraine; helping Ukraine better
defend itself and deter Russian aggression; and leading U.S. negotiating efforts to end the war
and restore Ukraine's territorial integrity.

Throughout my career, whether as a career diplomat, U.S. Ambassador to NATO, or in my other
capacities, I have tried to be courageous, energetic, clear-eyed and plain-spoken-always acting
with integrity, to advance core American values and interests. My efforts as U.S. Special
Representative for Ukraine Negotiations were no different.

In carrying out this role, I at some stage found myself faced with a choice: to be aware of a
problem and to ignore it, or rather to accept that it was my responsibility to try to fix it.

I would not have been true to myself, my duties, or my commitment to the people of the
United States or Ukraine, if I did not dive in and try to fix problems as best I could.

There are five key points I would like to stress in this testimony, and I would like to submit a
longer version and timeline of events for the record. Let me be clear that I wish to be complete
and open in my testimony in order to help get the facts out and the record straight.

First, my efforts were entirely focused on advancing U.S. foreign policy goals with respect to
Ukraine. In this, we were quite successful. U.S. policy toward Ukraine for the past two years
has been strong, consistent, and has enjoyed support across the Administration, bipartisan
support in Congress, and support among our Allies and Ukraine. While I will not be there to
lead these efforts any longer, I sincerely hope that we are able to keep this policy strong going
forward.

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