Russiagate: Ex-Austrian chancellor part of Manafort lobbying

On behalf of his client at time, Ukrainian President Yanukovych
Russiagate: Ex-Austrian chancellor part of Manafort lobbying
25 February 22:44 2018 Print This Article

A Ukrainian opposition lawmaker who helped uncover off-the-books payments to President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman said Saturday that a one-time Austrian chancellor was among the European politicians secretly paid to lobby for Ukraine. The lawmaker’s claim to The Associated Press came a day after the United States indicted former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort for allegedly paying former politicians to lobby on behalf of his client at the time, Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych. Serhiy Leshchenko, a lawmaker in Ukraine, said Saturday that he saw the information about the former Austrian chancellor in a ledger of off-the-books payments to Manafort. “I don’t remember the name, but I remember the position,” Leshchenko told the AP. The lobbying by unnamed political figures, identified in the indictment as the “Hapsburg Group,” allegedly took place in 2012-13, when Ukraine was moving toward integration with the European Union. Leshchenko also said that former Austrian Chancellor Alfred Gusenbauer had lobbied for Ukraine when the Russia-friendly Yanukovych was in power. “He lobbied for the interests of Yanukovych right after his election,” Leshchenko said.

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