Senior diplomat resignations accepted as Trump team enters
A number of senior career diplomats are leaving the State Department after the Trump administration accepted their resignations from presidentially appointed positions.
The State Department said yesterday that several senior management officials, as well as a top arms control diplomat, would be leaving. All had submitted their resignations prior to Donald Trump's January 20 inauguration as is required of officials holding jobs appointed by the president. They were not required to leave the foreign service, but chose to retire or resign for personal reasons, the department said.
While none of the officials has linked his or her departure explicitly to Trump, many diplomats have privately expressed concern about serving in his administration given the unorthodox positions he's taken on many foreign policy issues.
Turnover among senior leadership during presidential transitions is not unusual, although the career diplomats who are leaving the foreign service entirely had served under both Republican and Democratic presidents.
More resignations are expected to be accepted as Trump's diplomatic team takes shape, according to the officials who were not authorised to discuss personnel matters publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity. The now vacant jobs will be filled by subordinates on an acting basis until their full-time appointments are named, the officials said.
Trump has yet to fill many top diplomatic jobs, including the deputy secretary roles. His nominee to be secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, is expected to be confirmed by the Senate next week.