Tillerson fired as Secretary of State
US President Donald Trump has ousted Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State, Washington Post reported.
Trump confirmed the news in a tweet, saying Tillerson will be replaced by 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 wrote on his Twitter page.
Pompeo would need confirmation by the Senate to take the position.
In November, multiple news outlets reported that the White House had a plan to fire Tillerson and shuffle other members of Trump’s Cabinet to replace him. The New York Times reported at the time that the intention was to replace the official with Mike Pompeo.
Director of the Institute of Strategic Planning and Forecasting, Professor Alexander Gusev, speaking with Vestnik Kavkaza, noted that Tillerson's departure was widely expected for months. "Tillerson claimed that he was tired that he needed to change the vector. It should be taken into account that he is quite a serious businessman, a billionaire, he was engaged in a political career as well, but most of his career was connected with business, big business, including in Russia. There was a certain discontent of Trump, the media constantly poured oil on the fire in their relationship," the expert said.
The political scientist noted that Tillerson, when agreed to take the post of Secretary of State, counted on relative independence in decision-making. "I think Tillerson believed that he would be independent in decision-making, but he was constantly feeling some pressure from the Congress on the one hand, and from the incumbent president, on the other hand," he pointed out.
"The position of the secretary of state is, on the one hand, quite a serious post, on the other hand, it is a position of balances. The foreign minister is the person who determines the foreign policy vector. But Tillerson's whole series of statements on improving relations with Russia outraged part of the congressmen," Gusev added.
The expert specified that the nomination of Mike Pompeo for the post of Secretary of State was also expected. "Pompeo is not Tillerson, he will do everything Trump asks him to do. But I do not think that Tillerson is leaving the political arena, but of course he will pay more attention to his numerous projects," the director of the Institute of Strategic Planning and Forecasting said.