White House press secretary Sean Spicer resigns

It comes after appointment of the administration's new communications director

White House press secretary Sean Spicer resigns

Picture by: Sachs Ron/CNP/ABACA/ABACA/PA Images

White House press secretary Sean Spicer has resigned.

The New York Times reports that it follows the appointment of Wall Street financier Anthony Scaramucci as the administration's new communications director.

Spicer is said to have told President Trump he "vehemently disagreed" with the appointment.

The outgoing press secretary - who will continue in the role 'through August' - confirmed the news on Twitter this evening:

The current deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders will take over the role.

In a statement, Donald Trump said: "I am grateful for Sean's work on behalf of my administration and the American people. I wish him continued success as he moves on to pursue new opportunities - just look at his great television ratings!"

Picture by: Pool/ABACA/ABACA/PA Images

The US president also confirmed Mr Scaramucci's appointment, describing him as a "great supporter" and saying he would be an "important addition" to the administration.

According to the Washington Post, chief of staff Reince Priebus is among the other major administration figures to have opposed the appointment of Mr Scaramucci. 

In today's press briefing, however, Mr Scaramucci insisted he is a "dear friend" with Mr Priebus.

"We are committed as true professionals to the team and the process of getting the administration's message out," he added. 

The new communications director will start in the coming weeks, and told reporters he is working with ethics officials to deal with any potential conflicts of interest. 

Sean Spicer

Mr Spicer has been carrying out many of the responsibilities of communications director since Mike Dubke left the role in May.

Mr Spicer has been a high-profile figure since taking up the press secretary role in January, known for his frequently hostile exchanges with members of the press corps.

In his very first briefing, he accused the media of dishonesty in reporting the size of the crowd at President Trump's inauguration - despite photographs showing smaller crowds than Obama's inauguration ceremony.

Spicer has also received international attention for a series of gaffes.

He infamously suggested Adolf Hitler did not use chemical weapons, a remark he later apologised for.

He also faced criticism after citing a mystery Atlanta attack on three separate occasions, as part of his defence of President Trump's executive order on immigration.

Recent weeks have controversially seen Mr Spicer and Mrs Sanders mostly brief reporters off camera - the latest development in the administration's combative approach to the media.

Memorably, Mr Spicer was parodied by Melissa McCarthy on several occasions during the most recent season of sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live.