The Biden administration has determined that Iranian threats against former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and one of his former top aides remain credible and persist nearly two years after they left office, The Associated Press reported on Monday.
The State Department notified Congress last week that both Pompeo and Brian Hook, who served as special representative for Iran during the Trump administration, were still both subject to a “serious and credible threat from a foreign power or agent of a foreign power” stemming from their work while in government, according to the report.
The determinations — which mean Pompeo and Hook will continue to receive government protection — were signed by Deputy Secretary of State for Management Brian McKeon on Nov. 8 and sent to Congress on Nov. 9, according to the notifications obtained by AP.
The news agency previously reported in March that the State Department was paying more than $2 million per month to provide 24-hour security to Pompeo and Hook. The latest determinations — the eighth for Hook and the fifth for Pompeo since they left government in January 2021 — did not give a dollar amount for the protection.
At the time, the US Justice Department announced that Shahram Poursafi, an alleged member of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps, is wanted by the FBI in connection with the plot.
The latest notifications do not specifically identify Iran as the source of the threats, but Iranian officials have long vented anger at Pompeo and Hook for leaving the Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran, including designating Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps a “foreign terrorist organization” and subjecting it to unprecedented sanctions.
The plot that was revealed in August centered on Iranian revenge for the death of top IRGC commander Qassem Soleimani, who was eliminated in a US drone strike in Iran in 2020.
Iran has repeatedly vowed to avenge the death of Soleimani, who was eliminated in a US drone strike in Baghdad in January of 2020.
Earlier this year, an animated video published on the website of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei depicted the assassination of former US President Donald Trump, who ordered the air strike that eliminated Soleimani.