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New Secretary of State Mike Pompeo 'a great friend of Australia': Turnbull

15 March 2018

Trump has named Mike Pompeo, the director of the CIA, as his next pick to lead the State Department, with Deputy Director Gina Haspel slated to lead the agency.

Pompeo has advocated for military strikes against Iran while lobbying hard against the nuclear deal with Tehran. The brain drain includes the recently announced departures of Thomas Shannon, undersecretary for political affairs, and Joseph Yun, special representative for North Korea policy.

While he was in Nigeria, the Secretary of State assured Nigeria of USA support in the fight against terrorism."Nigeria has the United States' full support and we are actively working with our partners in what we can to assist you in this fight".

He states, "Mike Pompeo, Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, will become our new Secretary of State".

On policy, Pompeo is also likely to hew closer to Trump's views, although those can often be moving targets.

Will Pompeo push back against Trump?

It was also that Tillerson would say and do things out-of-sync with what the America-First stance needs to be.

Evans Revere, a former senior United States diplomat who dealt with North Korea under President George W. Bush, said Trump's move sends "a bad signal about the role of diplomacy". "If Pompeo is going to be an enabler, then all we've done is replace a moderate voice who's been ignored with a hawkish enabler who will simply echo and reinforce the President". Both positions require confirmation by the Senate. A hearing for Pompeo is expected in April.

In a surprise move, President Trump expressed a desire last week to meet personally with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, with a meeting potentially happening within the next several months.

Tillerson's chief of policy planning had been due to lead talks about the Iran nuclear deal this week in Vienna.

Tillerson's sacking comes shortly after Trump, without consulting his top diplomat, chose to accept an invitation to talks with North Korea's Kim Jong-un on resolving the Korean nuclear stand-off. Thank you to Rex Tillerson for his service! He failed to fill key vacancies in his department despite being on the job for more than a year, and at key moments seemed to be in his home state of Texas rather than in D.C.

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Kulanu head and Finance Minister Moshe Kalon threatened to quit the coalition if the budget was not passed. A number of votes must occur before the end of the week to greatly lessen the chances of early elections.

Lee Do-hoon, the Foreign Ministry's point man on North Korean nuclear issues, also departed for Washington on Wednesday to coordinate with USA officials ahead of the planned foreign ministerial talks. The former ExxonMobil chief's firing comes after a series of public rifts with the president since his appointment previous year.

Trump was perceptive in his post-firing comments: "I think Rex will be much happier now, but I really appreciate his service".

"As everybody knows, because it was so apparent in the media, State Department professionals did not care for Secretary Tillerson's style", Cyr said. "Mike Pompeo did a good job of that but Gina will be a natural".

The question outstanding is how Pompeo advises Trump to manage the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in particular and the Iran threat in general.

Stewart's office sent out a press release Tuesday morning announcing the conference, including Pompeo, but said it learned later in the day that he would not be able to attend. "This is not an insurmountable task for the coalition forces". He will miss his colleagues at the Department of State and the foreign ministers he has worked with throughout the world.

Rex Tillerson did not have the worst policy instincts of the Trump administration.

Senior White House officials said Chief of Staff Kelly had asked Tillerson to step down on Friday but did not want to make it public while he was on a trip to Africa.

Mr Trump's election campaign had been all about the upsides of running a sluggish government like an agile business.

It's not that Mr Tillerson's replacement, Central Intelligence Agency director Mike Pompeo, will be any softer on Russian Federation.

"That is an obvious concern", said Sen.

"We know him very well". Ron Wyden of OR, a Senate Intelligence Committee, accused Pompeo of being insufficiently tough on Russian Federation and said he'd "demonstrated a casual relationship to truth and principle". Tillerson's now been fired, so we'll see if Mnuchin honors his pledge.

New Secretary of State Mike Pompeo 'a great friend of Australia': Turnbull