Kirstjen Nielsen out as Trump homeland security secretary


President Trump announced Sunday afternoon that Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen "will be leaving her position" after 16 months in the job.

Nielsen has faced criticism over the a year ago, and has been a subject of recent critical segments from Fox News Channel's Lou Dobbs regarding her actions or, as some see it, perceived inaction on the border crisis.

She added: "This was a firing or quitting of her own making, very few people who seemed to, I would say, embrace the Trump policy of family separation more so than Kirstjen Nielsen".

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Mr Trump said Kevin McAleenan, the current US Customs and Border Protection Commissioner, will become acting secretary.

Nielsen visited El Paso, Texas, on Wednesday, marking her first stop on a border tour aimed at assessing the surge of migrants and the department's response.

The departure comes just days after Trump suddenly withdrew the nomination of Ron Vitiello for Immigration and Customs Enforcement director, blindsiding the Department of Homeland Security and the Hill.

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Trump has announced his desire to go in a "tougher" direction.

Nielsen has had a tumultuous tenure that saw Trump steadily ramping up pressure on his team to execute his immigration promises, which he believes is the single driving issue for his base of political supporters.

CBS News reported that it was not clear whether Kirstjen meant to resign voluntarily or made a decision to step down under the pressure.

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This is a breaking news story and will be updated.