John Bolton: Trump sought Xi’s help with re-election

(BBC) – US President Donald Trump tried to get China’s Xi Jinping to help him secure re-election, ex-National Security Adviser John Bolton’s new book says.

In details of the forthcoming book in US media, Mr Bolton says Mr Trump wanted China to buy agricultural produce from US farmers.

Correspondents say the episode is reminiscent of actions that led to Mr Trump’s impeachment.

The Trump administration is trying to prevent publication of the book. According to the Department of Justice complaint, it contains “classified information”.

The book, entitled The Room Where It Happened, is due to be released on 23 June.

In January, the White House said it contained “top secret” details, which must be removed, although Mr Bolton rejected this.

Mr Bolton also addresses the claims that formed a central part of the president’s impeachment trial.

In January, President Trump was impeached for withholding military aid to pressure Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky into starting a corruption investigation into Democratic presidential hopeful Joe Biden and his son Hunter.

The president denied the reports and Mr Trump was acquitted after a two-week trial in the Republican-controlled Senate, which did not include any witnesses.

Mr Bolton says the inquiry might have had a different outcome if it had gone beyond Ukraine and investigated other instances of political interference.

Mr Bolton joined the White House in April 2018 and left in September the following year, saying he had decided to quit as national security adviser. President Trump, however, said he had fired Mr Bolton because he disagreed “strongly” with him.