U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) discusses the status of the impeachment inquiry into U.S. President Donald Trump on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., December 5, 2019. (Reuters/Erin Scott)

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday said she has directed a House committee to draft articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump over his effort to pressure Ukraine to investigate a political rival, a historic step that sets up a fight over whether to oust him from office.

"The president abused his power for his own personal political benefit at the expense of our national security by withholding military aid and (a) crucial Oval Office meeting in exchange for an announcement of an investigation into his political rival," Pelosi said in a televised statement.

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Riot police scuffle with Hezbollah supporters during ongoing anti-government protests in downtown Beirut. (Reuters/Alkis Konstantinidis)

President Donald Trump's decision to freeze millions in security assistance to Ukraine has been dominating headlines lately given its central role in the impeachment inquiry.

But less attention has been granted to the Trump administration's ongoing hold on $105 million in congressionally-approved military aid to Lebanon as it faces an escalating economic and political crisis — with mass protests occurring nationwide.

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An aerial view of the Pentagon building in Washington, June 15, 2005. (Reuters/Jason Reed JIR/CN)

WASHINGTON — More than $35 million of the roughly $400 million in aid to Ukraine that President Donald Trump delayed, sparking the impeachment inquiry, has not been released to the country, according to a Pentagon spending document obtained by the Los Angeles Times.

Instead, the defense funding for Ukraine remains in U.S. accounts, according to the document. It's not clear why the money hasn't been released, and members of Congress are demanding answers.

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Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman (Asscociated Press/Susan Wash)

Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Business Insider.

The Army is prepared to move Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman and his family to a secure location on a military base if it's deemed necessary, according to U.S. officials who spoke to The Wall Street Journal.

Vindman has been the target of repeated public attacks, including from President Donald Trump, over his central role in the escalating impeachment inquiry into Trump.

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Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Business Insider.

Christopher Anderson, an aide to former Special Envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker, testified that the White House cancelled a Navy freedom of navigation operation (FONOP) in the Black Sea after President Donald Trump complained to then-national security advisor John Bolton about a CNN report that framed the operation as a counter to Russia, Politico reports.

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Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman (U.S. Army photo(

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman should not fear retaliation over his testimony to the U.S. Congress in its impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, Defense Secretary Mark Esper said on Monday.

Vindman, now detailed to the White House National Security Council, has been targeted by Trump following his Oct. 29 congressional testimony. Trump tweeted that Vindman was a "Never Trumper witness," raising questions about potential fallout on his military career.

"He shouldn't have any fear of retaliation," Esper told a small group of reporters during a flight to New York, adding that he had reinforced the "no retaliation" message in a conversation with the secretary of the Army.

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