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Rex Tillerson

U.S. says time to act on North Korea, China says not up to Beijing alone

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U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson warned on Friday that failure to curb North Korea’s nuclear and missile development could lead to ‘catastrophic consequences, while China and Russia cautioned Washington against threatening military force. Washington has recently lavished praise on Beijing for its efforts to rein in its ally Pyongyang, but Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi made clear to the U.N. Security Council it was not only up to China to solve the North Korean problem. “The key to solving the nuclear issue on the peninsula does not lie in the hands of the Chinese side”, Wang told the 15-member council in remarks contradicting the White House belief that it does wield significant influence.

Zarif: JCPOA result of Tillerson predecessors revision of US wrong policies against Iran

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Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Thursday recommended his US counterpart Rex Tillerson to learn form the country’s past statesmen’s failures in pushing forward antagonistic policies against Iran and said that the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) is result of his predecessors’ revision of US totally wrong policies against Iran and region. ‘US statesmen should know that they have not and will not achieve result by speaking in the language of sanctions and threat and using hostile rhetoric against Iran and Iranians,’ he said, recalling that US predecessors were not successful in implementing their unrealistic and wrong policies with regard to Iran. US foreign minister one day writes to Congress that Iran has complied with it commitments under JCPOA while the other day in contradictory statements accuses Iran of nuclear ambitions and described the deal as the one to bribe Iran. As to the repetition of empty and untrue claims of Tillerson and other US officials on Terrorism and Iran’s missile tests, he said, ‘We believe that Iran and other regional and global countries’ interests are contingent upon curbing unraveling terrorism which has unfortunately gone out of control due to US’ miscalculations and Imprudence as well as its regional allies’ instigations. No doubt that Iran as an advanced country in the fight against the evil phenomenon of terrorism is in the frontline of struggling for establishing peace and security in the region and world, in defiance of the US unwise policies, Zarif said. Reiterating the peaceful nature of Iran’s missile defense program, he described it as Iran’s legitimate and natural right which is not in contravention with any international regulations. Recalling the fact that how a dictator imposed a destructive war on Iran for eight years (former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein), Zarif said that Iranians will never allow the bitter experience be repeated again and the country’s missile program does not pose any threat to any country and is a totally rational policy.

Tillerson heads to Moscow carrying Western call for Russia to abandon Assad

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U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson carried a message from world powers to Moscow on Tuesday denouncing Russian support for Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, as the Trump administration took on America’s traditional mantle as leader of a unified West. Tillerson flew on the administration’s first cabinet mission to Russia after meeting foreign ministers from the Group of Seven advanced economies and Middle Eastern allies in Italy. They endorsed a joint call for Russia to abandon Assad. The administration of President Donald Trump, which came to power in January calling for warmer ties with Russia, was thrust into confrontation with Moscow last week when a poison gas attack in northern Syria killed 87 people.

G-7 Ministers appeal to Russia on Syria but reject sanctions

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The Group of Seven industrialized nations on Tuesday urged Russia to pressure the Syrian government to end the six-year civil war, but rejected a British call to impose new sanctions on Moscow over its support of President Bashar Assad. “Russia can be a part of that future and play an important role”, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said.Or, he added, it could maintain its alliance with Syria, Iran and militant group Hezbollah, “which we believe is not going to serve Russia’s interests’ longer term”. He flew straight from the summit in Italy to Moscow, carrying the G-7’s strong desire for a new start in Syria, but few concrete proposals to make it happen. Finally, the G-7 members broadly agree that Assad should go – but not necessarily when, or how. European leaders are especially conscious of the disaster in Libya, where an internationally backed ouster of dictator Moammar Gadhafi was followed by a descent into chaos and factional fighting and about the last week’s chemical attack, the group decided not to approve new sanctions but to ask an investigation to the Organization for the Prohibition of the Chemical Weapons

Turkey: New energy is needed in ties with the U.S.

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New energy is needed in ties with the U.S., the Turkish government has said during U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s first official visit to the capital Ankara, voicing hope for “concrete steps” particularly in the fight against jihadists in Syria and the extradition of Pennsylvania-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen. “It’s vital for us to give a new energy to the Turkey-U.S. relationship. Turkey and the U.S. have an important role to play regarding the challenges they face. Our area of responsibility is not limited to our respective regions, it is about all problems and opportunities across the world. That’s why the Turkey-U.S. friendship should be stronger than ever”, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu told a joint press conference with Tillerson in Ankara on March 30.

Tillerson will go to rescheduled meeting NATO after criticism

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U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will attend a rescheduled meeting of the NATO alliance’s 28 foreign ministers after coming under fire for saying he would miss the event because it conflicted with his schedule. Tillerson had faced criticism from advocates of the alliance for planning to skip the meeting. They said that  would only exacerbate concerns about the American commitment to NATO after President Donald Trump called it “obsolete” last year

Tilllerson: Defeating ISIS is top US priority in Middle East

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Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Wednesday that defeating ISIS would be the United States’ top priority in the Middle East and hinted at establishing a safe zone for refugee protection. The US will continue to pursue a five-pronged strategy of using military force; identifying and intercepting terrorist fighters who go to Syria from other countries; targeting the terror group’s finances; working to counter its propaganda; and stabilizing areas once ISIS has been ousted.

Tillerson ends China trip with warm words from President Xi

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The warm words from Chinese President Xi Jinping on Sunday, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson ended his first trip to Asia since taking office with an agreement to work together with China on North Korea and putting aside trickier issues. China has been irritated at being repeatedly told by Washington to rein in North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs and the US decision to base an advanced missile defence system in South Korea.

China Pushes Back on U.S. Talk of ‘All Options’ Over North Korea

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Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi pushed back against the tougher U.S. line on North Korea, reiterating his country’s view that the only way to rein in its reclusive neighbor is through talks. Wang spoke at a briefing in Beijing with U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who in Seoul on Friday refused to rule out a preemptive strike against Pyongyang if the threat from its weapons program was deemed severe enough.

US Secretary of State Tillerson calls for “new approach” to North Korea

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US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Thursday the escalating threat from North Korea’s nuclear program showed a clear need for a “new approach”, although he stopped short of detailing what steps the Trump administration would pursue. Tillerson was speaking at a news conference following talks with Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida in Tokyo, the start of his first trip to Asia as secretary of state. It was the first time Tillerson, a former oil executive with no prior diplomatic experience, had taken questions from the media since coming into office in early February.

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