U.S. pays $ 2 million per month to protect its aide Pompeo from the threat of Iran

Washington (AP) —The State Department pays more than $ 2 million per month to provide 24-hour security to former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and former Secretary of State facing a “serious and credible” threat from Iran. Say that.

The ministry told Congress that it cost $ 13.1 million to protect Pompeo and former Iranian envoy Brian Hook between August 2021 and February 2022. The report, dated February 14, stating “Confidential but unclassified,” was obtained by the Associated Press on Saturday.

Pompeo and Hook led the Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran, and the report reports that US intelligence could intensify after they left the government, so the threat to them is constant. It states that it is evaluated as being up to.President Joe Biden’s administration Engaged in indirect negotiations with Iran Over the return of the United States to the groundbreaking nuclear deal in 2015.

As a former Secretary of State, Pompeo was automatically granted 180 days of protection by the Bureau of Diplomatic Security of the State Department. However, that protection was repeatedly extended every 60 days by Secretary of State Antony Blinken. “The report states.

Hook, who was the public face of the Trump administration’s coercion to invalidate sanctions on Iran with Pompeo, was given special protection by Blinken for the same reasons as Pompeo shortly after he left the government position. rice field. It is also updated repeatedly every 60 days.

According to the report, the latest 60-day extension will soon expire and the Department of State will need to work with the Director of National Intelligence to decide by March 16 whether to re-extend protection.

The report was prepared because the special protection budget will run out in June and new funds will need to be injected if an extension is deemed necessary.

Current U.S. officials say the threat is being discussed in a nuclear deal in Vienna, where Iran is demanding the removal of all Trump-era sanctions. These sanctions include the designation of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps as a “foreign terrorist organization” for which Pompeo and Hook worked to approve.

The Vienna talks were expected to soon generate an agreement to bail out the nuclear agreement that President Donald Trump withdrew from the United States in 2018.

However, negotiations have been questionable due to new demands by Russia and a small number of unresolved US Iran issues, including terrorist designations, according to US officials.