ARB Co-chair Agrees to Voluntarily Appear for Transcribed Interview with Investigators

Published: May 22, 2013

WASHINGTON – House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa today announced that Ambassador Thomas Pickering, Co-Chair of the State Department’s Accountability Review Board, has agreed to voluntarily appear for a transcribed interview with Oversight Committee investigators. The Committee had previously subpoenaed Ambassador Pickering for a deposition after he declined to voluntarily sit for a transcribed interview.
“Today, Ambassador Pickering reached an agreement with the Oversight Committee to voluntarily appear for a transcribed interview and answer all questions posed by Committee investigators,” said Chairman Darrell Issa.  “As such, I have lifted his legal obligation to appear tomorrow for a deposition. His appearance for a transcribed interview with Committee investigators has been rescheduled for a date in the near future.”

“I appreciate his decision to cooperate on a voluntary basis with our Committee’s investigation of the Benghazi attack. Our investigation includes an examination of criticisms career State Department officials have made about the ARB report being ‘incomplete’ and letting senior officials ‘off the hook.’ Ambassador Pickering’s testimony will help the Committee’s effort to learn about the board’s work.  To date, this effort has been limited by the State Department’s unwillingness to provide critical documents.  This transcribed interview will help the Committee prepare for a public hearing with the Ambassador and his ARB co-chair Admiral Michael Mullen.”

The subpoena had required Ambassador Pickering to appear for a deposition on Thursday, May 23, 2013 at 10:00 a.m. The Committee has not announced the rescheduled date.