Ukraine investigating possible surveillance of former US Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch,

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The criminal investigation into possible Yovanovitch spying is in response to the publication of US House Intelligence Committee notes, suggesting that she was illegally spied on in Ukraine, the ministry said.

Texts released earlier this week by House Democrats which were handed over to them by accused Levy Parnas, associate of Rudy Giuliani, show Connecticut Republican congressional candidate Robert Hyde scolding Yovanovitch and suggest that he was monitoring her while she was in Kiev and relaying her movements to Parnas. Hyde declined to comment on CNN when asked if he had investigated Yovanovitch, who served as a key witness in the House's impeachment investigation against President Donald Trump.

The US State Department has not answered several CNN questions about Yovanovitch's possible surveillance and will open its own investigation.

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However, House Foreign Committee chairman Rep. Eliot Engel wrote in a letter on Wednesday that his team received a personal pledge from Assistant Secretary of State Diplomatic Security Michael Evanoff that the department would open an investigation. immediate about it.

A spokesman for the House Foreign Relations Committee confirmed to CNN on Thursday that the State Department told staff it would open an investigation.

"Ukraine's position is not to interfere in US internal affairs. However, the published records contain the fact that a possible violation of Ukrainian law and the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, which protects the rights of a diplomat in another country's territory, "said a statement from the ministry.

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"Ukraine cannot ignore these illegal activities on its territory. After reviewing these materials, the Ukrainian National Police, after their publication, initiated criminal proceedings," the statement said.

Giuliani associate implicates Trump in Ukraine scheme
Thursday's announcement comes two days after the former ambassador asked for an investigation on the "disturbing" notion that she was under surveillance by Parnas and Hyde.

"Needless to say, the notion that US citizens and others were monitoring Ambassador Yovanovitch's movements for unknown purposes is disturbing," Lawrence S. Robbins, Yovanovitch's lawyer, said in a statement. "We trust the appropriate authorities will conduct an investigation to determine what happened."

Yovanovitch, who was reminded of her post in Kiev in May 2019 following a slander campaign led by Trump's allies, was repeatedly criticized by Trump. He told his Ukrainian colleague in July 2019 that she would "go through some things," according to a White House transcript of the presidents' conversation – a message that Yovanovitch said. she found threatening. In her public testimony last year, as part of the impeachment investigation, Yovanovitch asked the State Department leadership to do more in the face of attacks on her and her fellow foreign service officials.

This story has been updated with additional information.

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CNN's Zachary Cohen and Kylie Atwood contributed to this report.

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