House

Lieu: Trump has no strategy on North Korea

Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) is going after President Trump's strategy on North Korea, saying the president lacks a game plan in dealing with the regime's nuclear ambitions.

"Ten months into this administration, if you ask a very simple and crucial question on North Korea, they can't answer it: 'Does the U.S. support diplomacy toward North Korea?' Right now, no one one knows," Lieu said in an interview with Newsweek published Thursday.

Lieu also warned of the implications of a war with Pyongyang, saying the U.S. needs to take it seriously.

"That is an unbelievably bloody scenario," Lieu said.

"North Korea is an absolute danger and threat, and we need to take its ability to kill a lot of people seriously," he said.

The comments from Lieu, a vocal Trump critic, come amid differing statements from administration officials on how to handle North Korea.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Saturday that the U.S. was in direct contact with North Korean officials, even though there is no official diplomatic relationship between Washington and Pyongyang.

State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert later said that North Korea had shown no interest in negotiating on matters related to its nuclear weapons program.

And on Sunday, Trump issued a series of tweets telling Tillerson he was "wasting his time" by negotiating with North Korea.

The developments come after North Korea's foreign minister threatened to test a hydrogen bomb in the Pacific Ocean last month in response to comments from Trump and said the president's speech at the United Nations about his country amounted to a declaration of war.

Outbrain
View desktop version