President Donald Trump has fired Rex Tillerson as secretary of State, ending his tumultuous tenure as America’s top diplomat that was marked by a series of public disagreements with his boss, CNBC informed.
Trump considers appointing the current CIA Director Mike Pompeo to take the position of the former Exxon Mobil chief executive. The president chose Deputy CIA Director Gina Haspel to be in charge of the spy agency.
The Washington Post first reported the news, which the president quickly confirmed in a tweet. Trump praised Tillerson for his service and said that Pompeo will do a “fantastic job.”
Since Tillerson took the post in February 2017, mixed messages repeatedly came out of the White House and a State Department with diminishing relevance. The inside clashes between the president and secretary of State came amid major international crises, including a potential nuclear showdown with North Korea.
Tensions between the president and his top diplomat hit one high when Tillerson, 65, publicly distanced himself from the president’s defiant response to violence at the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, this summer.
But there were numerous other clashes.
The policy rift emerged most sharply when Trump tweeted in October that Tillerson is “wasting his time” trying to negotiate with North Korea to end its nuclear and missile programs.
“Save your energy, Rex, we’ll do what has to be done!” the president wrote.
In October, NBC News reported that Tillerson already came close to resigning but was urged to stay in the job until the end of the year. He referred to Trump as a “moron” in July following a meeting with the president’s national security team, according to NBC, which cited multiple high-level administration sources.