The president of the Brookings Establishment resigned Sunday amid a federal investigation into whether or not he illegally lobbied on behalf of the rich Persian Gulf nation of Qatar.
Retired Gen. John Allen wrote in a letter to the feel tank that he was leaving with a “major coronary heart” but did not provide a direct explanation.
“I know it is very best for all worried in this minute,” Allen’s letter claimed.
A retired 4-star Maritime general who, Allen’s announcement arrived fewer than a 7 days right after the Related Press was first to report on new court docket filings that confirmed the FBI had seized Allen’s digital information as component of the lobbying probe.
Allen has not been charged with any crimes and, through a spokesman, has denied any wrongdoing.
Brookings, which experiencedthe working day soon after the AP’s original report, issued a assertion thanking Allen for guiding the assume tank through and other contributions. The establishment claimed data about the search for a new president would be forthcoming.
The new court filings detail Allen’s guiding-the scenes initiatives to help Qatar affect U.S. policy in June 2017 when a diplomatic disaster erupted among the gas-abundant Persian Gulf monarchy and its neighbors.
An FBI agent reported in an affidavit in support of a lookup warrant there was “sizeable evidence” that Allen experienced knowingly damaged a overseas lobbying legislation and experienced manufactured untrue statements and withheld “incriminating” paperwork.
Allen’s alleged lobbying get the job done concerned touring to Qatar and assembly with the country’s prime officers to offer them tips on how to impact U.S. plan, as properly as selling Qatar’s level of check out to best White Home officers and members of Congress, the FBI’s affidavit says.
The federal investigation involving Allen has now ensnared Richard G. Olson, a previous ambassador to the United Arab Emirates and Pakistan who pleaded responsible to federal costs before this month, and Imaad Zuberi, a prolific political donor now serving a 12-calendar year prison sentence on corruption expenses. Numerous members of Congress have also been interviewed.
Brookings, one particular of the most prestigious assume many thanks in the U.S., had originally employed Allen as a senior fellow right before tapping him as president in late 2017 and shelling out him far more than $1 million a year, according to the latest tax information.
“The integrity and objectivity of Brookings’s scholarship constitute the institution’s principal belongings, and Brookings seeks to sustain substantial moral criteria in all its operations,” the consider tank stated in its assertion Sunday.
Qatar has extended been a major money backer of Brookings, though Allen determined in 2019 to halt taking any new donations from the place.
Qatari officers have not responded to requests for remark about the Allen investigation.