US President Donald Trump ousted his Secretary of the state Rex W. Tillerson, replacing him with CIA Director Mike Pompeo, the US media reported. According to media, Tillerson learned that he had been fired Tuesday morning when he saw a tweet from Trump announcing the change.
“We were not really thinking the same,” President Trump told reporters at the White House, explaining his decision to replace Mr. Tillerson. "Really, it was a different mind-set, a different thinking".
Outgoing State Secretary Tillerson stated Tuesday afternoon that the president called him from Air Force One just after noon - more than three hours after the tweet to inform him about the dismissal.
Photo: EPA/SHAWN THEW; Outgoing US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson delivers farewell remarks in the State Department briefing room
During a short statement Mr. Tillerson said he would end his service at midnight on March 31, but was encouraging his policy planning team and under secretaries and assistant secretaries “to remain in their posts and continue in our mission at the State Department.”
“I’ll now return to private life, as a private citizen, as a proud American, proud of the opportunity I had to serve my country,” Mr. Tillerson said.
New State Secretary Pompeo will be replaced at the CIA by current CIA Deputy Secretary Gina Haspel, who will become the first woman to head the agency.