Recently terminated Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was alerted while in Africa late last week that he should be on the lookout for a tweet by President Trump over the next few days that would have to do with him, and only found out from a tweet Trump posted Tuesday that he had been fired.
White House chief of staff John Kelly called Tillerson on Friday to say there may be a presidential tweet in the near future that would be of interest to him. Kelly did not tell Tillerson, who was in Africa at the time, what the tweet would say or when it would be issued, according to an Associated Press report.
Tillerson returned from his Africa trip earlier than scheduled and had only been in the United States for four hours prior to Trump’s firing him Tuesday morning around 8:45 a.m.
The top diplomat had said earlier he cut his trip short because he felt exhausted and physically unwell.
Trump announced via Twitter Tuesday morning he had canned Tillerson, and initial reports indicated the dismissal took place during Tillerson’s trip to Africa last Friday after approximately a year of service.
A senior White House official said Trump removed Tillerson because he wanted to have CIA Director Mike Pompeo in place as top diplomat ahead of the upcoming talks with North Korea.
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