The State Department is preparing to recommend that the Trump administration’s top representative for Iran policy receive disciplinary action for his role in politically motivated firings of employees at the department, according to two government sources.
The department’s inspector general has been investigating Brian Hook and other State Department officials for their involvement in layoffs and other personnel decisions that impacted individuals who were thought to have perceived loyalty to the Obama administration. Several whistleblowers raised allegations against Hook and others, prompting the inspector general to analyze emails and other documents as part of the probe. The recommendation for Hook is set to be outlined in a new report by the inspector general. It is due out within the next several weeks.
Hook is one of the main Trump officials helping craft and promote the administration’s Iran policy. He liaises with the Treasury Department and the White House on Iran sanctions and Jared Kushner’s proposed Middle East peace plan. Hook worked with former National Security Adviser John Bolton during his time as the United Nations ambassador, and former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson brought him in to work on Middle East policy. Hook has traveled overseas to places like Israel and Saudi Arabia to work on gaining the confidence of allies on the U.S.’ so-called strategy of “maximum pressure” on Tehran.
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