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May 2018
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International News
Trump sacks Tillerson; CIA director Mike Pompeo to be new secretary of state
 
(WASHINGTON, Mar 13, 2018):President Trump on Tuesday unceremoniously fired his secretary of state Rex Tillerson while the cabinet official was on tour of Africa, making yet another abrupt departure in an administration with a dizzying turnover.

Trump announced that CIA director Mike Pompeo will be the new secretary of state, and Pompeo's deputy, Gina Haspel, will succeed him as the CIA chief, becoming the first woman to head the spy agency.

There was the usual clutch of polite, smarmy statements from all sides, but the sacking of Tillerson was abrupt and humiliating, redolent of Trump's reality TV style famously showcased in The Apprentice.

The secretary of state was visiting African countries last week when Trump reportedly phoned him on Friday to convey that he was going to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un + . Trump had previously berated Tillerson publicly on Twitter, saying he was wasting his time talking to North Korea, a line that had led the secretary of state to remark (just before Trump changed his mind) that there was no immediate prospect of talks with North Korea.

It is not immediately known what transpired in that phone call, but over the weekend Tillerson, who had finished visiting Djibouti and Ethiopia in course of a six-nation Africa tour, cancelled all his appointments in Nairobi, Kenya, citing unspecified illness. It was later announced he was flying back to Washington DC on Tuesday.

But Trump fired him even as he was returning to the capital, and Tillerson reportedly learned of it from Twitter, where the President announced his successor.

"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! Gina Haspel will become the new Director of the CIA, and the first woman so chosen. Congratulations to all!" Trump tweeted.

The state department then released an extraordinary statement saying, "The Secretary did not speak to the President and is unaware of the reason (he was fired), but he is grateful for the opportunity to serve, and still believes strongly that public service is a noble calling."

Tillerson's head was on the chopping block - as is everyone's in the Trump circle - from literally the day he took the job, given the President's style and mercurial temperament. His political obituaries were already being written after Trump undermined him or sidelined him on several issues, including the Iran nuclear deal (which Tillerson supported). Things went steeply south when it was reported that Tillerson had called Trump a moron, a claim that the secretary of state did not directly refute.

By November, rumors of his imminent departure were rife in Washington and archivists were digging to check which Secretary of State had the shortest stint in office. (Elihu Washburn, for two weeks, before he was sent as ambassador to France). But Tillerson dug in and let it be known that he was not going to leave despite Trump's obvious lack of confidence in him.

The most public moment of shame came when Trump did not even bother to consult him - or any of his cabinet colleagues for that matter - before deciding to engage North Korea and accept the invitation to meet Kim Jong-un.

As he headed home on Monday, Tillerson was also sharply critical of Moscow's purported role in the poisoning of a former Russian spy in London, and warned that it would almost certainly "trigger a response."

On Tuesday morning, as Trump headed out to California for his first visit to the state after he became President, he told reporters that that he made the decision to oust his Secretary of State on his own and that he was a "good man" who would be "much happier now".

"Tremendous energy, tremendous intellect," Trump said of Pompeo. "We are always on the same wavelength. The relationship is very, very good, and that's what I need as secretary of state." No word yet on how long Pompeo will last.

The Tillerson sacking also overshadowed Trump literally turfing out his personal assistant, John McEntee on Monday. McEntee was escorted out of the White House after he was fired, reportedly for over an unspecified security issue.


For the first time in 226, woman to lead the NYSE
Now, it's India vs Pakistan over Kishanganga project at World Bank
Afghanistan blast: 16 killed, 38 wounded in southern Kandahar province
Venezuelan Prez Nicolas Maduro wins re-election
Hirokazu Kore-eda's 'Shoplifters' wins Palme d'Or at Cannes
Cuba: 110 died in plane crash, 3 survivors 'critical'
The Royal Wedding: Prince Harry, Meghan Markle declared husband and wife
8 killed in explosions at Afghanistan stadium
Passenger plane with at least 104 on board crashes in Cuba: state media
Trump offers Kim no toppling pledge for giving up nukes
Royal wedding: Prince Charles to walk Meghan down aisle
Malaysian Police raid former PM Najib Razak's residences
LHC rejects petition asking treason case against Nawaz Sharif
Melania Trump undergoes surgery for 'benign kidney condition'
Chinese hail 'hero' pilot who landed with broken cockpit window
US opens Jerusalem embassy amid death of 52 protesters
Chinese double amputee finally summits Everest, decades after first bid
Pakistan prevents US diplomat from leaving country
Philippine chief justice Sereno, Duterte's critic, removed
PM Modi, KP Oli Jointly Inaugurate Janakpur-Ayodhya Direct Bus Service
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
I am a big flop actor: Karan Johar
 (Mumbai, May 5, 2018): Filmmaker Karan Johar is in mood to take up full-fledged acting jobs.  
Bittersweet moment for us: Akshaye on Vinod Khanna's Dadasaheb Phalke honour
Happy Sonam is getting married, Anand a great guy: Harshvardhan Kapoor
Auctioning 'Rustom' costume for good cause: Akshay Kumar
KERALA NEWS
Kerala among 13 states on thunderstorm alert
 (New Delhi, May 7, 2018): Thunderstorms accompanied by squall, hail and heavy rains are likel
Kerala Karshaka Jadha Opens to a Great Beginning / Video
Malappuram press club attack: RSS workers nabbed
Workers injured in mudslide at construction site
NATIONAL NEWS
No charges for cancelling flight tickets within 24 hours of booking: Aviation Ministry proposal
 (New Delhi, May 22, 2018):In a comforting piece of news for air passengers, the government on
Gowda says he is not opposed to Shivakumar being made minister
Plea In Supreme Court Seeks Review Of Verdict In Judge Loya Death Case
BJP now down to 272 Lok Sabha seats from 2014 tally of 282
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