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Trump Calls Reports Of Impending Tillerson Dismissal 'Fake News'


U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson speaks with reporters after meeting with the Libyan prime minister in Washington on December 1.

U.S. President Donald Trump posted on Twitter on December 1 that media reports that he plans to replace Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in the next few weeks are "fake news."

Trump said of Tillerson that "he is not leaving and while we disagree on certain subjects, (I call the final shots) we work well together."

The same day, Tillerson told journalists during an appearance with Libyan Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj in Washington that the reports were "laughable."

One day earlier, The New York Times reported that Trump wants to replace Tillerson with CIA Director Mike Pompeo, citing unidentified senior government officials.

Later that day, Trump was asked about the report during a White House appearance and he responded: "He's here. Rex is here."

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders issued a statement saying, "Secretary Tillerson continues to lead the State Department."

Tillerson is scheduled to travel to Brussels, Vienna, and Paris on December 4-8 for NATO, European Union, and Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe meetings.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters

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