Conor Powell is a Fox news correspondent in Jerusalem. On Monday, Powell suddenly announced that he was leaving Fox News, after a 9 year career with the company. Powell said that he was “uncomfortable with the direction of the news organization in recent months.” He also said that many people at Fox were unhappy with the channel’s direction.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Powell Announced That He Was Leaving Fox on Facebook — But Then Deleted the Post
On Friday August 3, Powell put up a post on Facebook announcing his plans to leave Fox News. The post was confusing and a little bit vague. It read: “After nearly 9 years I have decided to resign from Fox News. Those of you who have spoken to me in recent months, you will understand why I am leaving FNC.”
He then announced that he, his wife, and child will be leaving Jerusalem and returning to the US “in coming days.”
Shortly after the post went up, Powell took it down. But you can still find screenshots of the original Facebook post, here.
2. Powell Reportedly Told His Friends That He Was Unhappy With The Direction Fox Has Been Taking
Powell’s Facebook post was not very specific: it left a lot up to the imagination. The post only said that “those of you who have spoken to me in recent months” would “understand” why he had decided to leave Fox. But TheWrap is reporting that Powell had private conversations with his friends explaining his reason for leaving Fox.
According to reporting in TheWrap, Powell was “uncomfortable with the direction of the news organization in recent months.” He reportedly said that he was unhappy that Fox had eliminated news shows and had brought in more opinion shows. He also said there were not enough resources for reporters.
TheWrap’s source apparently added that “lots of reporters are very unhappy with directions of FNC [Fox News Channel] right now.”
3. Powell Was a Correspondent In Fox’s Jerusalem Bureau For 9 Years
Powell joined Fox News in 2009. He served as a correspondent in the station’s Jerusalem bureau, reporting on news from the Middle East.
Before coming to Fox, Powell reported on Congress and Federal politics for ABC 8 in Washington, D.C.
Powell graduated from the Virginia Military Institute with a B.A. in international studies and received an M.A. in social and political science from Cambridge University in England.
4. Powell’s Wife, Atia Abawi, Is a Foreign Correspondent and Author
Powell is married to Atia Abawi. The couple has one young son.
Abawi is a foreign correspondent who was formerly CNN’s Afghanistan correspondent and manager of its Kabul bureau. She has also reported for CNN from Myanmar and Pakistan, covering issues from Ang San Syu Kyii to the Benazir Bhutto assassination. Abawi also managed NBC’s operations in Kabul, Afghanistan before moving to Jerusalem in 2013.
She is the author of several books. Her first book, “The Secret Sky: A Novel of Forbidden Love in Afghanistan” was published in September 2014. Her most book, “A Land Of Permanent Goodbyes”, deals with the global refugee crisis and was published in January 2018.
Abawi was born in Germany but moved to the US at the age of 1. She graduated from the Virginia Tech.
5. Powell Said That He and His Family Will Soon Return to the US
In his deleted Facebook post, Powell announced that he, his wife, and their son will soon return to the US. He wrote that they would return “in coming days.” Powell did not specify what, exactly, he would be doing in the US, but he mentioned that he would be looking for work — and said that he was open to any suggestions about job openings.
In a statement to TheWrap, Fox News confirmed that Powell has left the company. They did not give any details about how he departed, or why.