In Summary
  • After the announcement, Tillerson suspended his schedule on grounds he was "unwell" and eventually cut short his trip to fly back to Washington.
  • A senior US official said the president wanted to reshuffle his team ahead of talks with North Korea.

WASHINGTON

US President Donald Trump on Tuesday announced the departure of his top diplomat Rex Tillerson, to be succeeded by the current CIA chief Mike Pompeo.

A senior US official said the president wanted to reshuffle his team ahead of talks with North Korea.

"Mike Pompeo, Director of the CIA, will become our new Secretary of State. He will do a fantastic job!" Trump tweeted.

"Thank you to Rex Tillerson for his service!" he added.

RESHUFFLE

The US president announced the appointment of Gina Haspel, a career intelligence officer, to head the Central Intelligence Agency — the first woman tapped for the post.

Trump praised Pompeo, a former US army officer and congressman who led the CIA for nearly 14 months, as "the right person for the job at this critical juncture."

"He will continue our program of restoring America's standing in the world, strengthening our alliances, confronting our adversaries, and seeking the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," Trump added.

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