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Gina Haspel - Trump's pick as CIA director

05:22 Wed Mar 14, 2018


Taken from/By: BBC
Report by: BBC

Gina Haspel, the newly nominated first-ever female director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), is a career intelligence officer with more than 30 years’ experience.

Controversially, she ran a prison in Thailand where suspected al-Qaeda members were tortured by waterboarding in 2002.

The so-called black sites – secret overseas locations where the CIA carried out what it termed “enhanced interrogation” techniques – were closed by former US President Barack Obama.

However, President Donald Trump has since spoken out in favour of the harsh interrogation of suspects.

Ms Haspel, 61, has extensive overseas experience and has served as chief of station on several postings.

Her leadership positions in Washington include deputy director of the National Clandestine Service – the CIA agency that co-ordinates clandestine operations – and chief of staff for the director of the National Clandestine Service.

Rising through the ranks, she was picked last year to be deputy to CIA director Mike Pompeo, despite criticism of her history in “black sites”.

At the time, Mr Pompeo described her as an “exemplary intelligence officer” with an “uncanny ability to get things done and to inspire those around her”.

She was picked as nominee for the top CIA job when President Trump named Mr Pompeo as Secretary of State to replace Rex Tillerson.

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