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Tillerson Skips Gala Attended by NKorean Envoy

Image: Tillerson Skips Gala Attended by NKorean Envoy
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (AP)

Sunday, 06 Aug 2017 05:09 PM

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has skipped a dinner in the Philippines for foreign ministers that North Korea's top diplomat attended. According to Tillerson's public schedule, he was due to attend the dinner at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations gathering in Manila.

Tillerson aide R.C. Hammond says that after a productive first day, Tillerson has taken time to prepare for Day 2. Representing the United States at the dinner was Susan Thornton, acting assistant secretary of State for East Asia and Pacific Affairs.

Before Tillerson's trip, the U.S. had said he had no plans to interact with North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho, who was spotted at the gala smiling and toasting with the other foreign ministers.

Tensions have risen the past several months as North Korea has conducted nuclear weapons testing, and concerns heightened with two successful tests of intercontinental ballistic missiles which experts say could possibly reach the United States. North Korea is in violation of international law and of U.N. Security Council resolutions by conducting the tests.

Though the U.S. is interested in negotiating with North Korea, Tillerson said this week such talks would have to be predicated on the North giving up its nuclear weapons aspirations and that the conditions for such talks haven't yet been met by North Korea's government.

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U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has skipped a dinner in the Philippines for foreign ministers that North Korea's top diplomat attended. According to Tillerson's public schedule, he was due to attend the dinner at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations gathering in...
AS, North Korea, Diplomacy, The Latest
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2017-09-06
Sunday, 06 Aug 2017 05:09 PM
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