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State Department To Probe U.S. Ambassador To Albania

The State Department announced Tuesday it was launching an investigation into the U.S. Ambassador to Albania, a day after House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.) informed Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice that the U.S. Embassy in Albania was attempting to cover up an illegal shipment of Chinese ammunition to Afghanistan.

Waxman sent Rice a letter on Monday alleging that U.S. ambassador to Albania John L. Withers II and other embassy officials tried to cover for a U.S. military contractor who allegedly broke the law by supplying the  U.S. government with old Chinese-made ammunition for use by Afghan Army forces.

On Tuesday morning, State Department spokesman Tom Casey said the agency's inspector general has been asked "to go and look at these charges and conduct a thorough, fair and transparent investigation of these allegations."

Esteemed Crypt colleague John Bresnahan has the details on the cover-up here. 

Waxman's committee held a hearing on the issue on Tuesday.

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