Washington—Representative Eliot L. Engel, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, today delivered the following statement on reports that the Trump Administration is planning to retire Ambassador Bill Taylor from his role as the top diplomat at the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv:

“Ambassador Taylor’s courage to testify in the face of the Administration’s bullying and obstruction provided critical facts for the impeachment inquiry. The Administration’s decision to recall him on the eve of the President’s impeachment and just weeks before the President’s likely Senate trial for abusing his office smacks of retaliation. It also bears the hallmarks of witness intimidation, as the President and Leader McConnell seek to prevent any further witnesses from testifying before the Senate. After everything President Trump and Rudy Giuliani have done to undermine our relationship with Ukraine, a professional diplomat should be selected to lead our embassy and hopefully repair the damage. But the State Department is again sending a troubling message that’s become far too familiar under this Administration: fall in line, shut your mouths, or you may find yourselves out of a job.”

# # #