Shortly after agreeing to an unprecedented meeting with the leader of North Korea, President Donald Trump revealed Tuesday that he has fired the nation’s top diplomat.
Trump announced in a post on Twitter that he intends to replace Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with current CIA Director Mike Pompeo.
“Mike Pompeo, Director of the CIA, will become our new Secretary of State. He will do a fantastic job! Thank you to Rex Tillerson for his service!” Trump tweeted.
The tweet from Trump came shortly after a report from the Washington Post indicated the president’s intention to oust Tillerson.
A statement from Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Steve Goldstein suggested that Tillerson was blindsided by the news.
“The Secretary had every intention of staying, because of the critical progress made in national security,” Goldstein said. “The Secretary did not speak to the president and is unaware of the reason.”
In later comments to reporters, Trump praised Tillerson for his service but also mentioned disagreements over the Iran nuclear agreement.
Trump also said he did not discuss his decision to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un with Tillerson, noting that the Secretary of State was out of the country at the time.
The president also said that he plans to nominate Deputy CIA Director Gina Haspel to replace Pompeo as the head of the agency.