Nikki Haley unexpectedly resigned on Tuesday as the US ambassador to the United Nations, in the latest departure from President Donald Trump’s often shifting national security team.
Meeting Haley in the Oval Office, Trump said she had done a “fantastic job” and would stay on to the end of the year.
“She told me probably six months ago,” Trump told reporters, that ‘”I want to take a little time off.'”
A successor will be named “in the next two or three weeks,” he said.
However, Haley was vague on her reasons for quitting, saying only that it was “important to understand when it’s time to stand aside” after a string of challenging jobs.
US media reports quoted administration officials saying privately that Haley’s departure was a surprise even to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
In a statement to journalists at the White House that lasted a few seconds, Pompeo called her a “great partner.” He then refused to take questions.
But she quashed the rumor. “No I’m not running,” she said.