- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 30, 2020

The Drug Enforcement Administration intends to open a representative office in Ukraine, a local news outlet reported Thursday.

Ukraine’s Interior Minister Arsen Avakov and U.S. diplomat Jorgan K. Andrews discussed the proposal, said 112.International, an English-language Ukrainian website.

“The representative office of DEA Office on Anti-Crime is expected to open this summer, which will allow Ukrainian experts to join a team on combating international drug crime,” Ukraine’s interior minister said in a statement to the website.

A DEA spokeswoman did not immediately respond to requests for comment by The Washington Times.

The new office will be a representative office, meaning it won’t be fully staffed. It is not clear how many DEA officials will work out of the office or what their roles will be.

Mr. Avakov’s office told the news outlet that Ukraine’s government has already begun working with the DEA on a program to counter small drug trafficking on the streets of that country.

Ukraine is at the center of the impeachment inquiry of President Trump. Democrats say the president withheld military aid to the country in exchange for investigating alleged corruption involving Hunter Biden, the son of 2020 Democratic presidential candidate and former Vice President Joseph R. Biden.

Mr. Trump has denied the claim, saying he did not pressure the Ukraine president to investigate the Bidens. The impeachment trial is currently ongoing in the U.S. Senate.

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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