The senior director for Europe and Russia at the National Security Council was abruptly escorted from the White House and placed on administrative leave until a security-related investigation can be completed, according to Margaret Talev of Axios:
“Andrew Peek had been expected to attend the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland next week, where President Trump is expected to meet with a number of world leaders as the impeachment trial takes place back in the Senate.”
Peek’s duties at the NSC are related to a number of highly sensitive areas of U.S. foreign policy. He had been the replacement for Fiona Hill and Tim Morrison, both of whom testified before the House Intelligence Committee as witnesses on the impeachment of President Donald Trump, and Peek has held other important posts in the Trump administration:
“He joined the NSC in November after serving as a deputy assistant secretary at the State Department, where he focused on Iraq and Iran … and previously served as a strategic adviser to now-retired Marine Gen. John Allen when Allen was commander of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan.”
The White House and National Security Council refused to comment on the sudden removal of Peek from the NSC, citing a policy of not discussing “personnel matters.”
Shortly after the Axios story broke, Bloomberg News was able to add some facts to Peek’s sudden removal from his post:
That’s the Fiona Hill, Tim Morrison, Russia/Ukraine job.
Peek was escorted from WH on Friday. Story out soon.
— Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) January 19, 2020
It remains unclear exactly what security matters may have led to the investigation into Peek, but the fact that his is the third person to depart from the position in less than a year certainly suggests that something is happening inside the highest levels of the White House.
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