American diplomats have been instructed not to post or retweet a statement from ousted Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Steve Goldstein about how Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was fired, US media reported on Thursday.
Multiple diplomats told CNN they received guidance from Washington instructing them not to circulate Goldstein’s statement. The diplomats found this type of guidance about an official statement from the former Under Secretary was “bizzare” and “strange.”
The White House fired Goldstein on Tuesday after he issued a statement contradicting its official version of the timing of Tillerson’s dismissal, US media reported.
White House officials said Chief of Staff John Kelly informed Tillerson in a phone call last Friday that he would be dismissed.
However, Goldstein’s statement claimed that Tillerson found out that he was fired on Tuesday morning when President Donald Trump announced the news in a Twitter post.
Trump has appointed State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert to serve as acting undersecretary of state for public diplomacy.