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Experienced diplomats leaving Trumps' State Department

Staff Writer |
Donald Trump's administration has lost several senior diplomats as the State Department saw a raft of resignations on Thursday, ahead of the expected confirmation of Rex Tillerson as its head.

Tillerson was narrowly approved by the Senate's Foreign Relations committee after being grilled at the beginning of January, with many lawmakers and critics sceptical of his relationship with Russia and former company ExxonMobil.

Resignations from the State Department this week have included Undersecretary for Management Patrick Kennedy, two assistant secretaries, Joyce Barr and Michele Bond, and Gentry Smith, who directs the office of foreign missions.

While a degree of transition is expected as the country moves from a Democratic president to a Republican one, many have pointed out that this week's resignations are far beyond what is standard.

"It's the single biggest simultaneous departure of institutional memory that anyone can remember, and that's incredibly difficult to replicate," David Wade, a former chief of staff to previous Secretary of State John Kerry, told the Washington Post.

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