Gina Haspel assumes role of acting CIA director after Pompeo confirmation
Gina Haspel on Thursday assumed her role as acting director of the CIA after the agency's former director Mike Pompeo was confirmed as secretary of state by the Senate, The Hill reported.
"I want to send my sincere congratulations to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and I look forward to working with him and the rest of President Trump's national security team," Haspel said in a statement.
"It is an honor to lead the CIA at this critical time. While we go through this transition, I've asked the CIA workforce to remain focused on our vital mission and do everything in our power to deliver the intelligence our policymakers need to keep American safe and strong just as they always have done. The American people and our allies around the world can only rely on CIA's vigilance, excellence, and determination to proudly serve," she said.
Haspel faces an uphill confirmation battle in the Senate.
While she has 33 years of experience working in the intelligence community, her critics have cited her ties to the CIA's harsh interrogation techniques after the Sept. 11 attacks.
Democratic Sens. Dianne Feinstein (California), Ron Wyden (Oregon), and Martin Heinrich have demanded that the agency declassify more information about Haspel to allow the public and lawmakers to consider her nomination.