Pentagon correspondent Hans Nichols said that language from Tillerson and Mattis is consistent with words used to describe a testy meeting.
Following a joint press conference from Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Secretary of Defense James Mattis, MSNBC Pentagon correspondent Hans Nichols said that words used by the department heads to describe a meeting with the Chinese delegation is consistent with diplomatic-speak for a “shouting match.”
“From both Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis – it’s the same language. Both of them used the word ‘frank’ to describe their conversations with the Chinese,” Nichols said.
“When you hear diplomats use the word[s] ‘open and frank’ that usually means they had something short of a full-on shouting match.”
Nichols said that what is definitely clear is that both secretaries pressured the Chinese to provide more help with North Korea.
Tillerson also said North Korea is China’s “responsibility,” a word that Nichols said had a strong connotation in diplomatic language.
The meeting and press conference came a day after President Trump signaled that the United States will take more direct action in response to Pyongyang’s aggression:
While I greatly appreciate the efforts of President Xi & China to help with North Korea, it has not worked out. At least I know China tried!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 20, 2017
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