Washington, June 19: Army Secretary Mark Esper has been nominated to take over the Pentagon after acting defence secretary Patrick Shanahan withdrew from the nomination process and resigned, US President Donald Trump said.
Trump on Tuesday tweeted that Patrick Shanahan has pulled out of consideration so that he can devote more time to his family, reported BBC.'Acting Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan, who has done a wonderful job, has decided not to go forward with his confirmation process so that he can devote more time to his family', Trump wrote on Twitter.
'I thank Pat for his outstanding service and will be naming Secretary of the Army, Mark Esper, to be the new Acting Secretary of Defense. I know Mark, and have no doubt he will do a fantastic job!', his tweet added. Trump told reporters that Shanahan submitted his withdrawal on Tuesday morning.
Earlier, Shanahan withdrew his nomination following published reports on a 2010 domestic violence incident involving him and his former wife.In a statement announcing his resignation, Shanahan called it unfortunate that a painful and deeply personal family situation from long ago is being dredged up and painted in an incomplete and therefore misleading way.
He said he did not want his three children "to relive a traumatic chapter in our family's life and reopen wounds we have worked years to heal".Shanahan also said that besides withdrawing his nomination, he is resigning from his position as Deputy Secretary of Defense.
Before joining the Trump White House, Shanahan had worked as an executive at Boeing, the US aerospace company which holds many US defence department contracts.He took over six months ago after the resignation of former Defence Secretary James Mattis.
The announcement came amid renewed tensions between the US and Iran after Washington accused the Islamic republic of attacks last week on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.
Shanahan on Monday announced the deployment of 1,000 US troops to the Middle East to counter "hostile behaviour" by Iranian forces.He added that the US does not seek conflict with Iran and the action had been taken to ensure the safety and welfare of military personnel working throughout the region to protect national interests.