Kim Darroch, Britain’s envoy to Washington, has stepped down from his post, saying it was ‘impossible’ to continue.
Kim Darroch has resigned as British ambassador to the United States as a diplomatic row between the two allies erupts.
The diplomat said “the current situation makes it impossible for me to carry out my role” following the leak of unflattering remarks made about US President Donald Trump.
“Since the leak of official documents from this embassy there has been a great deal of speculation surrounding my position and the duration of my remaining term as ambassador” he said in his resignation letter to Foreign Office Head of the Diplomatic Service Simon McDonald.
“I want to put an end to that speculation. The current situation is making it impossible for me to carry out my role as I would like.”
The UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office confirmed the 65-year-old’s resignation on Wednesday.
“That tranche of documents – diplomatic telegrams – was leaked to a British newspaper; it is assumed by either a politician or civil servant who is sympathetic to Donald Trump and wanted to embarrass the ambassador:” said Al Jazeera’s Laurence Lee from London.
“Trump then went full-bore against the UK: disinviting the veteran diplomat from several events and the administration cancelling an important meeting with UK trade minister Liam Fox.
“He has been described as a very experienced and very capable diplomat and this has led to a flat spin of a diplomatic crisis.”
Trump had on Monday launched a broadside against UK Prime Minister Theresa May and said the US would “no longer deal” with the British ambassador after the diplomat’s assessment of the Trump administration as “inept” was leaked to the Daily Mail newspaper.
Britain has launched an inquiry into the leak of confidential memos from the diplomat that angered the US president and embarrassed London.
“Contact has been made with the Trump administration setting out our view that we believe the leak is unacceptable” May’s spokesman told reporters earlier this week.
Trump lambasted May’s handling of Brexit on Twitter saying she disregarded his advice.
“What a mess she and her representatives have created” he wrote. “I do not know the Ambassador but he is not liked or well thought of within the US. We will no longer deal with him.”
“The good news for the wonderful United Kingdom is that they will soon have a new Prime Minister. While I thoroughly enjoyed the magnificent State Visit last month – it was the Queen who I was most impressed with!”
Hours after Trump’s tweet May’s spokesman reiterated Britain’s position that the leak was unfortunate and said Darroch “continues to have the prime minister’s full support”.