President Trump replaces Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State with Mike Pompeo

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson speaks to the media during a joint press conference with Kenya's Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs Monica Juma at a hotel in Nairobi Kenya Friday March

President Trump on Tuesday ousted Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State and said he is replacing him with CIA Director Mike Pompeo.

USA stock index futures pared their gains and the dollar also trimmed gains versus the yen while extending losses versus the euro amid the news.

He also named Gina Haspel the new Central Intelligence Agency head. "He will do a fantastic job!" he tweeted.

Donald Trump has fired his Secretary of State hours after Rex Tillerson backed the UK's claim that the Salisbury nerve agent attack was "highly likely" to have originated in Russian Federation.

Mr Pompeo will replace him at the State Department, and Gina Hapsel - the deputy director at the CIA - will succeed him at the CIA, becoming the first woman to run the spy agency, if confirmed. "Congratulations to all!" Trump said on Twitter.

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Ms Haspel in a statement also said she was excited for her promotion.

Tillerson had just returned from a shortened trip to Africa hours before Trump's announcement.

Trump's tweet Tuesday came the day after Tillerson blamed Russian Federation for an assassination in London - something the White House had specifically declined to do just hours before. Of Mr. Tillerson, the president said only, "I want to thank Rex Tillerson for his service".

Last October Mr Tillerson was forced to convene a news conference to deny reports that he was considering quitting, though he did not comment on a report that he had called his boss a moron after a meeting last July at the Pentagon.