The United Kingdom’s former ambassador to Turkey, Richard Moore, has been appointed to become the next chief of the Secret Intelligence Service, commonly known as MI6.
The B.B.C. reported that Moore was praised as “an excellent choice” and “calm, engaging, thoughtful and courageous” by a former MI6 chief. He succeeds Sir Alex Younger, who has been in the post for almost six years.
MI6 is the UK’s foreign intelligence service and is responsible for gathering intelligence outside the UK.
Moore served as ambassador to Turkey from 2014 to 2017. According to the Daily Sabah, he first went to Turkey in 1989 to study Turkish. In 1990, Moore and his wife Maggie brought their 6-year-old son and settled in Ankara. Two years later Moore’s daughter was born in Istanbul.
“I love Turkey and Turks. You can be proud and picky. I wish so many of you didn’t like conspiracy theories so much. But you are also fantastically warm and hospitable. And you are so resilient — these past four years have been really tough for Turkey. But you’ve come through it,” Moore said in his farewell statement when leaving Turkey in 2017 in a Twitter message.
In 2015, he was forced to refute reports circulating in Turkish social media that he was involved with the Gulen movement.