Secret Service has admitted a security breach has occured in the State Dinner hosted by President Barack Obama to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Aspiring reality TV stars-couple gatecrashed the dinner.
An American couple, who gatecrashed into a State Dinner in the White House on Tuesday, came face to face with U.S. President Barack Obama as well as Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, contrary to claims by secret service that they did not endangered the VVIP’s.
A White House picture posted on several U.S. websites showed the aspiring reality TV stars, Michaele and Tareq Salahi being greeted and shaking hands with Mr. Obama at a reception line, with Dr. Manmohan Singh smiling alongside.
The secret service earlier this week had said that the President was never in danger as the couple like other guests had gone through four layers of security checks.
An official said the couple, who attended the State Dinner without an invitation, did meet the President in the receiving line, but the gatecrashing has led to security alarm buttons being pressed.
The President has ordered a full review of the incident. An internal Secret Service investigation is already underway as the socialite couple breached several layers of security to mingle with international who’s who at the White House lawns.
“The Secret Service is deeply concerned and embarrassed by the circumstances surrounding the State Dinner,” Mark Sullivan, director of the Secret Service said in a statement.
Sporting a tuxedo and a flowing red lehenga, the Salahis posted their entry into the mega event on Facebook, with photographs taken with Vice President Joe Biden and White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.
“Although these individuals went through magnetometers and other levels of screening, they should have been prohibited from entering the event entirely,” Mr. Sullivan said admitting “That failing is ours.”
Now the Secret Service say they made a mistake and are taking action to identify exactly what happened and they will take the appropriate measures pending the results of their investigation, White House spokesman Nick Shapiro said.
Meanwhile, amidst media reports, the Indian Embassy in a statement said it had not requested any invitation for Michaele and Tareq Salahi.
The couple were known for their proximity to the Indian mission and were instrumental in the US-India Polo match scheduled for next summer at the prestigious National Mall.
“Neither the embassy nor anyone from the embassy was involved in any way in their getting into the White House. Nor did we request any invitation for them,” the Indian Embassy said in a statement.