60 percent of State Department’s top-ranking career diplomats have left: report

About 60 percent of top-ranking career diplomats have left the State Department, McClatchy reported.

The number of people seeking to join the foreign service has also decreased, with applications dropping by half, according to the news outlet, which cited recent data from the American Foreign Service Association.

Last week's resignation of the U.S. ambassador to Panama also resulted in people serving at the State Department raising questions about their own work there, it added. 

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John Feeley resigned from his post, saying he can no longer serve under Trump.

“Given what happened in the last few days, people are wondering how are they going to be effective in an environment like this,” a U.S. official who works regularly with the State Department told McClatchy.

“It’s one thing for us to go in and slam our hands on the table and say this is what we want ... It’s another to denigrate them and make it crystal clear this is what our leadership thinks about them in the vulgarest of terms.”

Feeley submitted his resignation letter before reports that Trump, during a meeting with lawmakers at the White House, referred to Haiti, El Salvador and African nations as "shithole countries," according to McClatchy.

Some other officials in the State Department reportedly have since questioned whether they are serving productively in their roles.

Still, one State Department official told McClatchy that there is a "sense of duty to carry out what we've been trained [to do]."