Tags: Iran | North Korea | Trump Administration | rex tillerson | trump | wants | iran deal

Tillerson: Will Continue Diplomacy With NKorea 'Until the First Bomb Drops'

(CNN/"State of the Union")

By    |   Sunday, 15 October 2017 10:08 AM

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Sunday the United States will continue diplomatic efforts to curb North Korea’s nuclear missile buildup “until the first bomb drops.”

In an interview with CNN’s “State of the Union,” Tillerson asserted President Donald Trump “has made it clear to me to continue my diplomatic efforts” with Pyongyang.

“Those diplomatic efforts will continue until the first bomb drops,” he said.

He said the president’s tweets are often used “to cause this forcing action, to get off the status quo, to force people to take action and move to a different place.”

“The American people elected him to change the status quo. That's what he's doing,” Tillerson said, calling Trump the “most unique president we've certainly ever seen in modern history."

Tillerson, a cattle rancher, even joked he doesn’t agree with the senator who suggested Tillerson had been gelded before the world by Trump’s tweets calling the diplomacy a “waste of time.”

"I checked. I'm fully intact,” he deadpanned.

The nation’s top diplomat also said he wants to stay in the Iran nuclear deal, and that he agreed with Defense Secretary James Mattis that he wouldn’t want Congress to immediately impose sanctions ending the deal.

"I do agree with that," Tillerson said. "And I think the president does as well."

“Let’s see if we cannot address the flaws in the agreement by staying within the agreement, working with the other signatories, working with our European friends and allies within the agreement,” he said, adding, “That may come in a secondary agreement as well.

“So, we want to take the agreement as it exists today. Fully enforce that agreement, be very demanding, identify Iran's compliance under the agreement and then begin the process of addressing these flaws that we see …”

Tillerson also pushed back against reports he called Trump a “moron,” and reiterated he’s “not going to deal with that kind of petty stuff."

"I'm not playing,” he said. “These are the games of Washington. These are the destructive games of this town. They're not helpful to anyone.”

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Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Sunday the United States will continue diplomatic efforts to curb North Korea's nuclear missile buildup "until the first bomb drops."In an interview with CNN's "State of the Union," Tillerson asserted President Donald Trump "has made it...
rex tillerson, trump, wants, iran deal, second agreement
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2017-08-15
Sunday, 15 October 2017 10:08 AM
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