Former British Prime Minister David Cameron has criticized US President Donald Trump for asking his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate a potential political rival.
A rough transcript of a July phone call that was released last week showed Trump repeatedly pushed Zelensky to “look into” former Vice President Joe Biden, and his son, Hunter. There is no evidence of wrongdoing by either Joe or Hunter Biden.
“It’s a conversation I never had and never would have,” Cameron said when asked about the call between Trump and Zelensky.
Speaking to CNN’s “New Day,” the former UK leader said he thought asking a foreign leader to dig out dirt on a political opponent was not the right thing to do.
“We should fight our political battles at home using conventional weapons, rather than seeking assistance elsewhere, that just doesn’t seem right to me,” Cameron said.
Cameron, who stepped down after losing the UK’s European Union referendum in June 2016, said he didn’t want to comment in depth on the issue.
“I’m going to restrict myself a little bit in what I say because our countries do have an amazing relationship and I want that to continue,” he said, adding that “over-commenting on each other’s domestic politics sometimes doesn’t help that relationship to flourish.”
Speaking about Trump, Cameron said the US president “has changed the rules of politics quite a lot.”
“He’s broken a lot of the rules about things you can say and things you can do and get away with, but in the end, we live in democracies, if you don’t like an outcome, you have to vote against it, you have to mobilize,” he said.
The former leader of one of America’s closest allies also appeared to warn Trump about having a close relationship with the Russian President Vladimir Putin. “You have to have a very tough approach with Putin,” Cameron said.
Since coming to the office, Trump has struck a more friendly tone towards Moscow, which has found itself isolated and hit by Western sanctions following its annexation of Crimea in 2014.
The US President has even campaigned for Russia to be allowed back into the G7, clashing with other leaders including Germany’s Angela Merkel and the UK’s Boris Johnson.
Cameron said trying to have a relationship with Putin isn’t the problem. “I think it’s right to try and have a relationship, because you’ve got to talk about Syria, you ought to talk about ISIS, you’ve got to deal with terrorism,” he said.
“But clearly with Putin, there are some very clear lines you need to draw, and the clearest of lines is in Europe, it is wrong to redraw Europe’s border by force,” Cameron added.