Page last updated at 01:36 GMT, Saturday, 6 June 2009 02:36 UK

US intelligence nominee withdraws

Protest showing water-boarding technique
Some regard CIA interrogation techniques as torture

US President Barack Obama's choice for a top intelligence job has withdrawn after questions about his experience of CIA interrogation techniques.

Phillip Mudd worked for the CIA under former President George W Bush.

He was due to face Senate confirmation hearings next week for a new position at the Department of Homeland Security.

But Mr Mudd withdrew after some senators questioned if he had direct knowledge of techniques such as water-boarding - banned by President Obama.

Some say harsh interrogation techniques practised by the CIA in the past - such as water-boarding, or simulated drowning - amount to torture.

Under George Bush, Mr Mudd worked at the CIA's Office of Terrorism Analysis.

Earlier this year President Obama nominated him to be Under Secretary of Intelligence at the Department of Homeland Security.

In a statement Mr Mudd said he did not want to become a distraction for the president's agenda.

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