Bill Taylor formally leaves Ukraine ambassadorship

Bill Taylor formally leaves Ukraine ambassadorship
© Greg Nash

William Taylor, who led the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine and was a key impeachment witness, has officially been replaced.

The embassy said in a Thursday tweet that Kristina Kvien, who was previously the deputy chief of mission, has taken over Taylor's role as the mission's interim head. 

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A source told The Hill last month that Taylor would leave his position on Jan. 1 and that Kvien would replace him. 

A source familiar with the situation told The Hill on Thursday that a senior State Department official asked Taylor to give up command of the embassy Jan. 1. 

For the time being, Taylor remains a State Department employee, but has returned to Washington, the source said. 

Taylor was a key witness during the impeachment inquiry into President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump marks 'very sad milestone' of 100K coronavirus deaths DOJ: George Floyd death investigation a 'top priority' Lifting our voices — and votes MORE last year. He testified that a White House meeting and military aid to Ukraine were conditioned on investigations of a company that employed former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenLifting our voices — and votes Longtime Democratic pollster: Warren 'obvious solution' for Biden's VP pick Biden will help close out Texas Democrats' virtual convention: report MORE's son and alleged Ukrainian interference in the 2016 election.

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Taylor also described foreign policy efforts led by Trump’s attorney Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiSunday shows preview: States begin to reopen even as some areas in US see case counts increase Moussaoui says he now renounces terrorism, bin Laden Democrats launch probe into Trump's firing of State Department watchdog, Pompeo MORE.

The House voted in December to impeach Trump and accused him of abuse of power in his dealings with Ukraine as well as obstruction of Congress during the impeachment probe. Whether he is removed from office will be decided by a Senate trial.

Trump has denied wrongdoing.  

Kvien said in the video posted to Twitter that U.S. support for Ukraine would remain "steady" under her leadership.

"Our embassy team will continue to partner closely with the Ukrainian government and civil society in support of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity," she said.