US Semate confirms ex-CIA chief as secretary of state

09:33 • 27.04.18



The US Senate has confirmed former CIA director Mike Pompeo as secretary of state, ending a tough confirmation battle, BBC News reports.


Mr Pompeo had been accused by Democrats of being a war hawk and harbouring anti-Muslim and homophobic views.


The Senate voted 57-42 to approve him as America's top diplomat, the second of the Trump presidency.


His predecessor, Rex Tillerson, was sacked last month by the president via Twitter amid a personality clash.

 

Republican senators, who control the upper chamber, voted unanimously on Thursday to confirm Mr Pompeo. Six Democrats joined them.


Some of those Democrats - including North Dakota's Heidi Heitkamp and West Virginia's Joe Manchin - come
from states that President Donald Trump won in 2016.

 

The approval comes in time for Mr Pompeo - a former hardline conservative congressman from Kansas - to lead a US delegation to Nato foreign minister talks in Brussels this weekend.


In a statement, Mr Trump applauded his new secretary of state as someone who "will always put the interests of America first".


"Having a patriot of Mike's immense talent, energy, and intellect leading the Department of State will be an incredible asset for our country at this critical time in history," he added.


Mr Pompeo has been arranging a summit between Mr Trump and North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un. The meeting could happen in the coming months.

 





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