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Defense Secretary James Mattis to retire in February

STANFORD, CA - JULY 24: U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis looks on during a press conference at the Australia-U.S. Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN) at the Hoover Institution on the campus of Stanford University on July 24, 2018 in Stanford, California. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defense James Mattis are participating in the two-day AUSMIN forum at Stanford University. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
STANFORD, CA - JULY 24: U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis looks on during a press conference at the Australia-U.S. Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN) at the Hoover Institution on the campus of Stanford University on July 24, 2018 in Stanford, California. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defense James Mattis are participating in the two-day AUSMIN forum at Stanford University. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images) (Getty Images)

WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump has announced that Defense Secretary Jim Mattis will retire at the end of February.

Trump says on Twitter that a new secretary of defense will be named soon.

Trump's announcement comes a day after he surprised U.S. allies and members of Congress by announcing the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria.