WASHINGTON, June 3 (UPI) -- CIA Director George Tenet confirmed Thursday he would leave the U.S. agency July 11, the seventh anniversary of his being sworn in as its director.
President Bush earlier said he had accepted Tenet's resignation tendered Wednesday evening, saying Tenet was leaving "for personal reasons."
During an emotional speech Thursday afternoon to CIA employees, Tenet said resigning was "most difficult decision I've ever had to make ... it was a personal decision and had only one basis in fact -- the well being of my wonderful family. Nothing more and nothing less."
Tenet went out of his way to praise Bush, saying when Bush took office, he recognized the importance of the CIA and "spent time with us almost every day." Tenet called Bush a "great champion" of CIA employees.
Tenet, 51, was sworn in as the director of Central Intelligence on July 11, 1997 after being appointed to the post by President Clinton and unanimous votes by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the full Senate. His seven-year tenure as DCI was the second longest in agency history.