Tillerson Says ‘Peaceful Pressure’ Still Best North Korea Option

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson urged continued “peaceful pressure” on North Korea, even as one Republican senator ratcheted up talk of war.

Taking stock of his tenure after six months in office, Tillerson told reporters at the State Department Tuesday that the U.S. goal isn’t to topple Kim Jong Un’s regime or find “an excuse to send our military north.” Instead, he said, it’s to get the regime to develop the “willingness to sit and talk with us and others, but with an understanding that a condition of those talks” is North Korea giving up its nuclear weapons capability.

“We’re trying to convey to the North Koreans: We are not your enemy,” Tillerson said. “We’re not your threat, but you are presenting an unacceptable threat to us, and we have to respond.”

It was a decidedly less confrontational tone than that of Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, who told NBC Tuesday



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