Early reports on Oct. 1, 2017, suggest Secretary of State Rex Tillerson may be attempting to negotiate directly with Kim Jong Un.
President Donald J. Trump issued a message via Twitter telling Tillerson that he was “wasting his time with Little Rocket Man…” concerning reported negotiation efforts. A second tweet followed that read, “Save your energy Rex, we’ll do what has to be done!”
Tillerson told reporters that the U.S. has “direct channels” to Pyongyang on Saturday. “The goal is to calm things down,” he said adding, “Obviously, it would help if North Korea would stop firing off missiles. That would calm things down a lot.”
A spokesperson for the State Department says the U.S. has several ways to communicate with North Korea and that has repeatedly assured North Korea there is no desire to promote regime change. North Korea officials have not shown any interest in talks surrounding denuclearization.
Tillerson was in Beijing meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping to discuss a variety of issues including North Korea, and prepare for Trump’s scheduled trip to the region next month.
In September, while addressing the United Nations, Trump said it is possible that the U.S. may have to “destroy” North Korea to defend the U.S. and its allies.
Trump and the Kim have been exchanging barbs for weeks. Trump has issued several statements intended to warn the dictator and called him “Little Rocket Man.”
The undeterred leader continues to test missiles and has even threatened to test a hydrogen bomb over the Pacific next. Additionally, he claims he will shoot down U.S. military planes.
Trump says Kim is “on a suicide mission for himself and for his regime.”
By Laurel Fee
Edited by Jeanette Smith
CNN Politics: US has ‘direct channels’ to Pyongyang, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says
USA Today: Trump: Rex Tillerson is wasting his time negotiating with ‘Little Rocket Man
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