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Gina Haspel set to become first female director of CIA

Press Trust of India  |  Washington 

is all set to become the first female of the CIA, despite her role in the spy agency's controversial techniques, including waterboarding, post the 9/11 terror attacks.

The yesterday voted 54-45 to confirm the 61-year-old veteran as the of the (CIA).

Haspel, facing allegations from opposition Democratic Senators and human rights bodies for her alleged role in CIA's programme post 9/11, was confirmed by the after six Democratic senators supported Donald Trump's nominee.

Prominent among those was Senator Mark Warner, Ranking Member of the Select Intelligence Committee.

Haspel once oversaw a so-called in after the September 11, 2001 terror attacks in the US.

"Congratulations to our new CIA Director, Gina Haspel!" Trump tweeted soon thereafter.

Haspel will be the first woman to lead the spy agency in its 70-year history.

A career CIA for more than three decades now, Haspel, is expected to be sworn in shortly as the top American spymaster.

She worked in Africa, and classified locations around the globe and was tapped as of the CIA last year. She worked under former CIA director until Trump moved him to be his

During her career in the CIA, Haspel has worked in various capacities and has been stationed clandestinely overseas including her stint in Africa, wherein in the 80s she assisted Mother Teresa in humanitarian assistance.

"Gina has clearly demonstrated that she is a person of high integrity with valuable frontline and experience as a

"Her confirmation represents the best we have to offer as a country. On behalf of the Intelligence Community, we salute Director Haspel, a trailblazer...," said Daniel Coats, Director of

During her confirmation hearing on May 9, Haspel assured lawmakers that under her leadership, the CIA will not restart a detention and programme carried out post 9/11.

"Today the has a clear legal and policy framework that governs detentions and interrogations. Specifically, the law provides that no individual in US custody may be subjected to any interrogation technique or approach that is not authorised by and listed in the Army Field Manual," she said.

Senator applauded the Senate's bipartisan confirmation of Haspel's nomination for CIA director.

"With her unparalleled CIA experience, she will hit the ground running and continue to lead the world's finest intelligence agency. I look forward to working with her as she helps advance and protect America's national security interests from the daily threats we face," he said.

"I believe she is someone who can and will stand up to the if ordered to do something illegal or immoral - like a return to torture," said Warner, who had initially opposed her nomination but finally voted yes.

However, several members of the opposition remained critical of her and voted against.

"Ms Haspel played a central role in the CIA's Rendition, Detention and Interrogation programme. This was one of the darkest chapters in our nation's history and it must not be repeated," Senator said.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, May 18 2018. 13:55 IST