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Trump tells Tillerson he's wasting his time

03 October 2017, 08:57 | Myrtle Vega

Trump tells Tillerson he's wasting his time

Trump tells Tillerson he's wasting his time

"I told Rex Tillerson, our wonderful Secretary of State, that he is wasting his time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man", he tweeted.

"We are probing, so stay tuned", Tillerson told a small group of reporters during the China trip.

Trump tweeted in August that "talking is not the answer", while United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley has said the time for dialogue is over and she'd "have no problem kicking it to" Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.

Trump's tweets undermining his secretary of state follow his attacks Saturday on San Juan's mayor over the Puerto Rico hurricane crisis and come a day after Tillerson said the U.S. had direct lines of communication with North Korea and that he was trying to "calm things down" following months of escalating rhetoric over Pyongyang's continued nuclear weapons and ballistic missile tests.

While Mr Tillerson and Chinese leaders didn't mention North Korea in public remarks, he did raise the issue behind closed doors, according to a senior State Department official who asked not to be identified.

Park also said that the U.S. has felt a need for "quiet communication" with the North to resolve humanitarian issues including the release of USA citizens held captive by Pyongyang. The US and North Korea have ramped up their rhetoric about one another as Pyongyang continues to develop its nuclear weapons program. Mr Trump tweeted, after it emerged the United States had lines of communication with Pyongyang.

North Korea has in recent months tested long-range missiles that potentially could reach the US, and on September 3 conducted its largest nuclear test explosion to date.

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Another day, another chapter in the ongoing escalation of tensions between the USA and North Korea.

However, faced with a recalcitrant Pyongyang and friction with Washington, Beijing has stepped up the pressure on North Korea, including the recent order on North Korean businesses in China to shut down as stated in the most recent UN Security Council resolution. That's a stance that runs counter to what others in the USA administration - including President Donald Trump - have said.

About 28,500 US servicemembers are based in the South. Others said the tweets might represent a "good cop-bad cop approach" to North Korea that may or may not be misguided or bear fruit.

The official also said to the extent that diplomatic channels exist between Washington and Pyongyang, they are aimed at securing the return of Americans detained by North Korea. "They're a little overheated right now, and I think we need to calm them down first".

Still, Tillerson said the most important thing is to ease the rhetoric. Obviously it would help for North Korea to stop firing off missiles.

Kim responded by saying he would "surely and definitely tame the mentally deranged USA dotard with fire".



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