USA: Gina Haspel's nomination for Central Intelligence Agency job is 'affront to human rights'

Haspel wins backing of Senate panel for CIA post

Haspel wins backing of Senate panel for CIA post

Amid an intensifying public debate on torture, President Donald Trump's pick to head the CIA on Tuesday said the interrogation program the agency ran at black sites after the September 11 attacks should not have been undertaken.

The committee voted Wednesday in a closed session before a hearing on the intelligence community's assessment of 2017 Russian election meddling, in which former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, former CIA Director John Brennan and former National Security Agency Director Adm. Mike Rogers are testifying. "I'm pleased to see the Committee favorably report her nomination to the full Senate, and I look forward to her swift confirmation".

During her confirmation hearings, she refused to condemn the program, but did make a statement indicating that the agency should not have undertaken its interrogation program in which al Qaeda detainees were tortured after the September 11 attacks of 2001.

A career intelligence officer and now acting director, Haspel faces ongoing questions over her work running a covert detention site where terror suspects were brutally interrogated.

Harris says Haspel's unwillingness to share more detailed information about the CIA's use of enhanced interrogation techniques is "deeply troubling".

As Director of the CIA, Gina Haspel will be the first operations officer in more than five decades to lead the Agency.

The 15th member committee is comprised of eight Republicans and seven Democrats.

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Haspel also said she would not permit the spy agency to resume its harsh interrogation program, which became one of the darkest chapters of the CIA's history and tainted America's image worldwide. John McCain (R-Ariz.), who endured years of it as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who authored the Senate's definitive report on the CIA's practices - to declare Haspel unconfirmable.

Warner's support was matched by one other unnamed Democrat in the secret vote, ensuring the closely divided Senate will also be able to pass Haspel through in a vote expected to come before the end of the month.

'Gina Haspel is the most qualified person the President could choose to lead the CIA and the most prepared nominee in the 70 year history of the Agency, ' Burr said Wednesday.

"Most importantly, I believe she is someone who can and will stand up to the president if ordered to do something illegal or immoral - like a return to torture".

Confirmation by the full Senate appeared likely as five Democrats — Mark Warner of Virginia, Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Joe Donnelley of Indiana, Bill Nelson of Florida and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota — announced their support. Susan Collins saying she would vote for Haspel's confirmation and Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) and Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) ― who are facing tough re-election fights this year ― also said that they meant to support Haspel as Central Intelligence Agency director. Some of Ms. Haspel's past actions and beliefs did not meet that standard. McCain just isn't anticipated to be in Washington for Haspel's affirmation vote.

McCain's warning resonated with several critics of the president, including his fellow Arizona Republican Sen.

"Due to the overwhelming public evidence suggesting Haspel's participation and compliance with crimes including torture, enforced disappearance and obstruction of justice, Haspel's nomination is an affront to human rights."

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