The resignation shocked Washington's intelligence and political communities, representing a sudden end to the public career of the best-known general of the post 9/11 wars.
According to a statement he sent to CIA employees, Petraeus asked President Barack Obama on Thursday to allow him to resign and on Friday the president accepted. Petraeus said he had shown “extremely poor judgment” in having the affair.
“Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours,” Petraeus said.
Obama said in a statement that the general had provided “extraordinary service to the United States for decades” and had offered a lifetime of service that had “made our country safer and stronger.”
The president said that CIA Deputy Director Michael Morell would serve as acting director. “I am completely confident that the CIA will continue to thrive and carry out its essential mission,” Obama said.
Petraeus has been married for 37 years to Holly Petraeus, whom he met when he was a cadet at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.