Pence Recalled To White House As Putin Pulls Out Of Scheduled Event; Officials Say "No Cause For Alarm"

Update 4: Roughly six hours have passed since the first reports emerged that Vice President Mike Pence was forced to cancel an event in New Hampshire on Tuesday to attend to an unspecified emergency "situation" in Washington. At first, officials said Pence had landed in New Hampshire, then that Air Force 2 was forced to turn around mid-flight. Then, it finally emerged that he had never actually left Washington.

Naked speculation about the circumstances surrounding the cancellation has flourished in the absence of any kind of explanation from the White House. Was it a presidential health-related emergency? Did Iran carry out an underground nuclear test?

Whatever the reason, it could be a while before the public receives an explanation, according to Marc Short, Pence's chief of staff:

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Update 3: RT is reporting that Putin is meeting with his defense minister about this morning's deadly fire aboard the Losharik, a Russian nuclear-powered deep submersible.  

It's still unclear what Pence and the EU Security Council are doing.

Now, officials are clarifying that Air Force Two never actually left Washington.

Meanwhile, the National Guard has confirmed that gunshots are being investigated at the Pease Air National Guard base in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. It's unlikely that has anything to do with Pence, but it's another strange coincidence.

One last thing: US officials are claiming that Pence's decision to cancel his trip has nothing to do with Putin's cancelled meeting. Here's a tweet from Pence's spokeswoman.

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Update 2: It could be just a coincidence, but the timing is certainly curious. Not long after Pence turned around to head back to Washington Tuesday morning for an unspecified non-emergency, Russian press reported that Vladimir Putin has abruptly pulled out of a scheduled event to hold a meeting with his defense minister.

Meanwhile, the European Commission security council has also been convened for a meeting. There's speculation that it could be related to Iran, or Syria, or that Russian submarine that caught fire [Note: these 'unconfirmed' reports have been exposed as a hoax].

Or perhaps we're closer to the brink of WWIII than most Americans realize? An aide to the VP said simply that 'something came up', and another reporter noted that officials seemed to be going out of their way to say that the meeting has 'nothing to do' with Trump or his health. Another reporter said the incident has nothing to do with national security.

One Twitter wit seized the opportunity to make light of the situation.

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Update: The Office of the VP has clarified that Pence wasn't recalled to Washington for an "emergency", but to deal with an undisclosed "situation."

Though the language is less ominous, but only slightly.

A crowd of roughly 200 had shown up to the Granite Recovery Center in Salem, NH to hear Pence speak about the opioid crisis, but they are now leaving now that the event has been cancelled.

Another reporter said she was told by unnamed officials that the reason for the Pence recall is "no cause for alarm."

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Vice President Mike Pence has been called back to the White House on Tuesday because of an undisclosed "emergency," NBC 10 Boston reports.

Pence had been scheduled to land in Manchester around 11:25 am, but instead, just before he was due to land, news broke that his event had been cancelled and that he would be heading back to Washington instead of making an appearance in New Hampshire to discuss the opioid crisis.

Air Force 2 was reportedly diverted due to the emergency. No further information was immediately available.

Whatever the emergency, it can't be good.