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A mass exodus took place Thursday at the US State Department, while the officials that are in leadership positions suddenly left their positions held for years.

It is unclear whether senior officials of the Foreign Service of the State Department had resigned as a protest, as claimed by The Washington Post, or have been asked to leave by the new administration, as mentioned by CNN.

Traditionally, State Department officials present their resignations at the beginning of each new administration as a sign of respect, but is largely a symbolic gesture.

Patrick Kennedy, undersecretary for management at the State Department, who worked on external relations since 1973, resigned along with Assistant Secretary of State for Administration, Joyce Anne Barr, Deputy Secretary of State for Consular Affairs, Michele Bond, and Ambassador Gentry O. Smith, director of the Office of Foreign Missions.

Furthermore, neither Victoria Nuland, Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, was not asked to remain in office.

An official claimed that the movement seems to have been trying to clean up the new administration among the leadership of the State Department. 

“The Department will not collapse,” said a second official. “Everyone has a good deputy. It’s a huge institutional loss, but the department has excellent subordinates and career people who will come forward. They will take responsibility. “

According to CNN, Kennedy, Bond, Barr and Smith received from the White House letters of acceptance of their resignations, being informed that their service is no longer needed.

Gregory Starr, asidjunct secretary of state for diplomatic security, and Lydia Muniz, director of the Bureau for Development Operations Abroad, resigned the day that Donald Trump became US president, according to The Washington Post.

Although there is a tradition that at the beginning of each administration, many US government officials are changed, neo liberal media claims that the number of people replaced this time is significantly large and that can be a problem.

There was an opinion that says some officials who resigned were somehow “tainted” by their association with the State Department under Hillary Clinton.

Trump demanded the resignation of Kennedy in October 2016, after reports emerged that claimed that the official was accused of having pressured the FBI to decrease the degree of secrecy of the emails of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, during the private email server investigation. 

Instead, said an FBI agent, Kennedy would allow the agency to send a larger number of agents abroad.

The resignations take place during a sensitive time for the new US administration. Dozens of high-level positions have remained unfilled after nearly a week since Trump was sworn in as president.

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