GOP calls to 'release the transcript' of Ukraine-US call as Zelensky slams Biden

"Now it's your turn," House Republicans tweeted.

Hannah Nightingale Washington DC

On Friday, following reports that a call between President Joe Biden and Ukranian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Thursday "did not go well," House Republicans are joining calls for the president to release an unedited transcript of the call.

"Now it's your turn," House Republicans tweeted Thursday, linking a 2019 video of then-presidential candidate Biden calling for the White House to release the transcript of former President Donald Trump's call with Zelensky.

This call to action was posted to Twitter just hours after CNN reported that a source told them the call between the two leaders "did not go well."

"We have breaking news for you in our world lead, a senior Ukrainian official tells CNN that today's phone call between President Biden and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky 'did not go well.' Our source tells CNN that the two disagreed about the immediacy of a threat between a Russian attack on Ukraine," CNN's Jake Tapper told the cable news network's viewers.

"We should note that the White House just released its own readout of that call and there was no mention of President Biden's warnings or the two president's disagreements," Tapper added, citing the White House readout.

Tapper then turned to CNN senior international correspondent Matthew Chance, who told viewers there was "definitely a disagreement" about the level of risk for Ukraine regarding a Russian invasion. Chance also reported that Biden told Zelensky an invasion was "virtually certain" once the ground becomes more frozen.

The White House has disputed these claims, saying anonymous sources were "leaking falsehoods" about the phone call in question.

"President Biden said that there is a distinct possibility that the Russians could invade Ukraine in February. He has said this publicly and we have been warning about this for months. Reports of anything more or different than that are completely false," National Security Council spokeswoman Emily Horne tweeted.

A Zelensky spokesperson also disputed CNN's report, saying the claims were "completely false." In a tweet, the Ukrainian president also thanked Biden.

"Had a long phone conversation with @POTUS. Discussed recent diplomatic efforts on de-escalation and agreed on joint actions for the future. Thanked President @JoeBiden for the ongoing military assistance. Possibilities for financial support to Ukraine were also discussed," Zelensky tweeted Thursday.

In a Friday press conference, Zelensky appeared to take a different tone in regards to Biden, saying that he is the leader of Ukraine, and that he knows the details better than any other leader as to what's going on with Russia and an invasion.

"We're grateful to the United States for their ongoing support to our sovereignty and territorial integrity. But I'm the president of Ukraine. I'm based here. And I think I know the details deeper than any other president," Zelensky said.

"The question is not about the US president," Zelensky explained to reporters during Friday's press briefing. "It is important that the president should know the situation from me, not from the intermediaries."

"We do not see a bigger escalation than it has been before. Yes, the number of troops has gone up, but I was talking about this in early 2021 when there were drills in the Russian Federation, there was a big buildup... I don't think the situation is more intense than it was at that time... there was no such coverage at that time of Ukraine," he continued, according to RealClearPolitics.

"We told the [American] president there has to be a balanced approach. I'm not saying he is influencing American media, the independent, but the media policy there has to be well-balanced. If they want to know what the situation is they can come to Kiev. Do we have tanks on the street? No."

Zelensky later said: "I started talking to the leaders of the countries to explain to them that we need to stabilize the economy of our country because of those signals that say tomorrow there will be war, because those signals were sent by even leaders of respected countries, sometimes they are not even using diplomatic language, they are saying tomorrow is the war. That means panic in the market. Panic in the private sector... So how much does it cost our country to have to... We need unity. People have to be certain and sure in their army, in their president. People should trust their government and special services, but this varied information from varied sources can not mislead our country because this raises economic panic."


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