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Secretary of State Tillerson Says Reports Trump Wants Him Out 'Laughable'

© AFP 2023 / JEON HEON-KYUN / POOLUS Secretary of State Rex Tillerson
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson - Sputnik International
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has commented on the latest reports on his possible resignation.

"It's laughable," Tillerson said in response to a request by journalists to comment on reports claiming the White House plans to remove him from the position of the US secretary of state.

The statement followed the Wall Street Journal report, citing unnamed sources, claiming that a number of administration's officials, including Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, were expected to leave their post. However, White House spokesman Raj Shah has immediately denied the report, calling it "pure speculation."

READ MORE: White House Denies Reports of Upcoming Massive 'Reshuffle' in US Administration

On November 30, the New York Times reported citing administration officials that the White House was planning to replace Tillerson with Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo by the end of 2017 or shortly later, prompting a response voiced by State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert, who said that White House Chief of Staff John Kelly notified the department that the reports about plans to remove Tillerson were not true, adding that the foreign policy chief remains committed to his job.

President Donald Trump has first declined to comment on the media reports regarding Tillerson on Thursday, but later said that the allegations are "fake news," however, admitting having several disagreements with the member of his administration.

READ MORE: Will Rex Tillerson Become a Victim of His Own State Department Revamp?

The claims of the upcoming resignation of the US secretary of state date back to this summer, when CNN reported that Tillerson was considering stepping down from the State Department before the end of the year due to growing frustration with the Trump administration.

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, with his Japanese counterparts, addresses a news conference after their U.S.-Japan Security talks at the State Department in Washington, U.S., August 17, 2017 - Sputnik International
White House Planning to Replace State Secretary Tillerson With Pompeo - Reports
According to the report, Tillerson has been allegedly at odds with the US administration over several issues, including the issue of State Department staffing and the policy toward a number of countries, including Iran, North Korea and Cuba.

NBC News subsequently reported that three officials familiar with an alleged crisis in relations between Trump and Tillerson said Tillerson was infuriated with the president during the summer over the issue of North Korea and after a July 20 Pentagon meeting allegedly called him a "moron," a claim strongly denied later by both the president and the Secretary of State.

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