Donald Trump sacks Rex Tillerson as US Secretary of State

  • Donald Trump sacks Rex Tillerson as US Secretary of State

Donald Trump sacks Rex Tillerson as US Secretary of State

President Donald Trump has ousted Rex Tillerson as secretary of state, tweeting in a surprise Tuesday morning announcement that Tillerson will be replaced by Central Intelligence Agency director Mike Pompeo. Last week, Trump's chief economic advisor Gary Cohn resigned after the president announced he would impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

A White House official said Mr Trump wanted to have a new team in place before upcoming talks with North Korea and various trade negotiations. "He will do a fantastic job!" he tweeted.

Trump's tweet Tuesday came the day after Tillerson blamed Russian Federation for an assassination in London - something the White House had specifically declined to do just hours before.

Trump publicly undercut Tillerson's diplomatic initiatives numerous times, including on Monday when the former secretary of state's comments about Russian Federation appeared to be at odds with those of the White House. Haspel has served as Pompeo's deputy and will become the first woman to serve as director.

Tillerson also appeared out of the loop last week when Trump announced he would meet with North Korea's leader and become the first sitting US president to do so.

Donald Trump has fired his Secretary of State hours after Rex Tillerson backed the UK's claim that the Salisbury nerve agent attack was "highly likely" to have originated in Russian Federation.

More on this as it develops.

In a written statement that followed the tweet, Pompeo said that, if confirmed, "I look forward to guiding the world's finest diplomatic corps in formulating and executing the President's foreign policy".