Late on Friday night, the State Department released 71 pages of Ukraine-related records to American Oversight, including text messages of Kurt Volker, the former special envoy to Ukraine, and his calendars. You can view the documents here.
Volker’s calendars, while sparsely populated, cover a date range of March to September 2019. The entries contain little information, and are seemingly missing a lot of key details, especially for an official who traveled extensively and attended frequent meetings. The entries also regularly copy Volker’s nongovernmental email account, which raises questions about whether additional records exist elsewhere.
The text messages released appear to be duplicative of texts that Volker provided House investigators in the impeachment inquiry. They include communications with Ambassador to the EU Gordon Sondland and Ambassador Bill Taylor, as well as with Andrey Yermak, a top adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, whom Volker put in touch with Trump personal attorney Rudy Giuliani.
“Kurt Volker was on both sides of the so-called official and unofficial channels with Ukraine,” said American Oversight Executive Director Austin Evers. “While tonight’s production appears to contain documents Volker already provided to Congress, the absence of calendar entries documenting his extensive travels and meetings, as well as his practice of copying a non-governmental email account on correspondence, suggests Volker may have maintained relevant documents outside of government systems.”
American Oversight will seek answers and pursue any additional documents if they exist. And more document productions in this lawsuit — which seeks Volker’s calendars and his communications with or about Giuliani as well as State Department senior officials’ emails referencing Giuliani, former Vice President Joe Biden, or Ukrainian-born businessmen Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman — are still to come. In December, the court ordered the State Department to prioritize the calendar entries and text messages, and to process 300 pages per month. American Oversight expects a second production of documents in early February.
American Oversight has five other Ukraine-related lawsuits, and on Wednesday received its second document production in another lawsuit for State Department records related to Giuliani and his efforts. You can view those here.
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