READ: Volker’s opening statement to Congress in Ukraine investigation

President Trump‘s former envoy to Ukraine, Kurt Volker, said he was unaware of efforts by the president or his officials to press Ukraine to investigate allegations against former Vice President Joe Biden.

In his opening statement to congressional committees behind closed doors on Thursday, Volker also detailed conversations with Rudy Giuliani, the president’s personal attorney, and defended Biden from allegations of wrongdoing.

He testified that he attempted to persuade the president and Giuliani against having a negative view on Ukraine, and defended Biden as “a man of integrity.”

Volker is one of the first Trump officials to testify in the House impeachment inquiry against Trump. House committees are examining whether Trump sought to gain information on his political rival, Biden, from Ukraine.

Read Volker’s opening statement below.

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