Trump says Tillerson ‘wasting his time’ talking to North Korea
By MATTHEW LEE
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump said Sunday that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was “wasting his time” trying to negotiate with North Korea over its nuclear and missile programs, raising speculation about whether Trump could be undermining efforts to maintain channels of communication or somehow bolstering the diplomat’s hand in possible future talks.
It was not immediately clear what prompted Trump’s tweets, among a series of weekend posts that ranged from hurricane recovery efforts in Puerto Rico to NFL players’ allegiance to the national anthem, and at whom they were aimed: Tillerson, North Korean leader
In this undated file photo distributed on Saturday, Sept. 16, 2017, by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, center, attends what was said to be the test launch of an intermediate range Hwasong-12 missile at an undisclosed location in North Korea. Kim is calling President Donald Trump “deranged” and says in a statement carried by the state news agency that he will “pay dearly” for his threats. The statement, carried by North’s official Korean Central News Agency, responds to Trump’s combative speech at the U.N. General Assembly on Tuesday, Sept. 19. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP, File)
, those pushing for continued diplomacy, those favoring a military response to repeated provocations.
Tillerson had acknowledged on Saturday, after meetings in Beijing with Chinese leaders, that the Trump administration was keeping open direct channels of communications with North Korea and probing the North’s willingness to talk.
He provided no elaboration about those channels or the substance of any discussions. After he left China, his spokeswoman issued a statement saying that North Korean officials “have shown no indication that they are interested in or are ready for talks regarding denuclearization.”
And then Trump weighed in the next day with tweets that included his usual personal […]