Trump: U.S. is wasting its time trying to talk to the DPRK

Americas Now

U.S. President Donald Trump is back on twitter. This time, saying that diplomacy is wasted on Pyongyang. The tweet comes as his top diplomat, Rex Tillerson, wrapped up a trip to Beijing, where he discussed the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea with senior Chinese officials.

CGTN’s Roee Ruttenberg has details.

As he traveled to China late last week, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was confident, even optimistic.

While there, he revealed that the Americans have been secretly speaking directly with DPRK officials — news which may have shocked U.S. President Donald Trump’s base at home, given his anti-Pyongyang rhetoric — but news that was welcomed by China.

Beijing believes dialogue is the only way to resolve the DPRK nuclear issue. It has repeatedly said it sees no military option.

Now on Sunday, this tweet from Donald Trump: “I told Rex Tillerson, our wonderful Secretary of State, that he is wasting his time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man…”

That’s Trump’s new nickname for DPRK leader Kim Jong Un, coined on the global stage last month. Trump continued, “Save your energy Rex, we’ll do what has to be done.”

Hours later, the U.S. president tweeted again. “Being nice to Rocket Man hasn’t worked in 25 years, why would it work now,” Trump wrote. “Clinton failed, Bush failed, and Obama failed. I won’t fail.”

Trump is due to visit China next month, as well as key U.S. allies in the region.

Meanwhile, the Americans say they’ve confirmed a Hong Kong port call later this month for the USS Reagan. The 100,000-ton super carrier is the only one based outside of U.S. waters.

On Saturday, it conducted routine drills in the South China Sea, under the watchful eye of two Chinese frigates.

The Hong Kong port call would be its first in three years, after the Reagan was denied entry last year.

South Korea’s defense ministry says that later in the month, the Reagan will join its navy in exercises on detecting, tracking and intercepting ballistic missiles which are among the types of exercises that Pyongyang calls aggressive, and has demanded halted.

China and Russia have been doubling-down on a “double-freeze”, calling on the DPRK to freeze all nuclear activity, and on the U.S., Japan and South Korea to freeze all military drills.

The Trump administration has rejected that idea, saying the drills are legitimate, justified and necessary.