Trump foreign affairs pick Rex Tillerson passes first test

A senate committee approved US President Donald Trump's pick for secretary of state, despite concerns over Tillerson's dealings with Russia.

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Former chairman and chief executive officer of Exxon Mobil, Rex Tillerson who does not have any foreign policy experience will serve as the US secretary of state after Senate confirmation.

 A Senate committee on Monday approved former Texas oil executive Rex Tillerson as the new US secretary of state.

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted 11-10 to approve Tillerson, with every Republican backing the former oil executive and every Democrat opposing him.

The oil tycoon spent 40 years at ExxonMobil, the world’s largest oil company, but  has no formal foreign policy experience. He does have experience dealing at a business level with foreign countries, including Russia.

His close ties with Russia on behalf of the company raised concerns about his nomination as the Obama administration pushed for additional sanctions against Moscow over its alleged interference in the US presidential election.

The Republican majority Senate is expected to approve Tillerson's confirmation.

TRT World's Nafisa Latic has more.

TRTWorld and agencies