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Hope Hicks resigns as White House communications director

White House Communications Director Hope Hicks, one of President Trump's closest aides and advisers, arrives to meet behind closed doors with the House Intelligence Committee, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2018. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Hope Hicks is resigning as the White House communications director, it was announced Wednesday.

The announcement is a major loss for President Donald Trump, who has worked closely with the 29-year-old since he first launched his presidential campaign in 2015.

According to the New York Times, Hicks will leave her position in the coming weeks. She does not yet have a set departure date.

“There are no words to adequately express my gratitude to President Trump. I wish the president and his administration the very best as he continues to lead our country,” Hicks said in a statement.

She had reportedly been thinking about leaving her position for several months, telling “colleagues that she had accomplished what she felt she could with a job that made her one of the most powerful people in Washington, and that there would never be a perfect moment to leave.”

Hicks also reportedly “approached the president and told him she wanted to leave so she could start exploring opportunities outside of the White House.”

In a statement, Trump praised her for her dedication and work over the last three years.

“She is as smart and thoughtful as they come, a truly great person,” Trump said. I will miss having her by my side but when she approached me about pursuing other opportunities, I totally understood. I am sure we will work together again in the future.”

Hicks was hired on in September, after Anthony Scaramucci was fired from the position after 10 days. She was the fifth communications director in the 13 months that Trump has been in office.

The announcement came one day after Hicks was interviewed for nine hours by the panel investigating Russia interference in the 2016 election and contact between Trump’s campaign and Russia.

During the interview, she acknowledged to a House intelligence panel that she has occasionally told “white lies” for President Donald Trump but has not lied about anything relevant to the Russia investigation, according to those present for Hicks’ closed-door testimony.

The top Democrat on the intelligence panel, California Rep. Adam Schiff, said after the meeting was over that Hicks answered questions about her role in Trump’s campaign and answered some questions about the transition period between the election and the inauguration.

But she would not answer any questions about events since Trump took the oath of office, similar to some other White House officials who have spoken to the committee. Schiff said Hicks did not assert any type of executive privilege, but just said she had been advised not to answer.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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