CIA nominee Gina Haspel tried to withdraw over 'torture' allegation: Report

WION Web Team
Washington, DC, USAUpdated: May 07, 2018, 07:54 AM IST

Gina Haspel Photograph:(AFP)

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Haspel is due to succeed Mike Pompeo, who became secretary of state last month.

Ahead of her Senate intelligence committee appearance on Wednesday, Gina Haspel who was picked by Trump to be the next CIA chief has reportedly informed the White House that she may not attend the confirmation hearing over her intelligence records which allegedly involves "waterboarding" technique which is condemned as torture.

A US media report said she has told the White House that she may step aside from the hearing than be subjected to hard grilling by the Senate committee who are reportedly set to ask several uncomfortable questions about her tenure in the CIA.

However, the White House has apparently said she will not withdraw. Haspel, 61, would become the first woman CIA chief if she confirmed by the Senate committee.

The White House reportedly wanted to hear her version ahead of Senate confirmation hearing with several controversial topics set to be discussed.

Haspel's work in the CIA has been shrouded in mystery. She is widely believed to have used waterboarding techniques as a brutal form of interrogation on at least two terror suspects.

The al Qaida suspects were allegedly interrogated in secret prisons outside the US in what many believe was a form of "torture".

Although Republicans hold a narrow majority, her confirmation could become a close affair with several questions being raised about her work and techniques she followed during her time as a field officer in the aftermath of 9/11.

Former President George Bush had authorized the Rendition, Detention and Interrogation Program after the 2001, September 11th terror attacks on the New York trade towers and the Pentagon.

Haspel is due to succeed Mike Pompeo, who became secretary of state last month.