Department Press Briefing
I'd like to start out with a couple announcements this afternoon. The first is about the earthquake and the tsunami that took place in
Our mission in
Next, I would like to thank the
While we're talking about those confirmations, I would then like to announce that we have a new under secretary who started here at the
Last thing I'd like to announce is that the Secretary will be traveling later this week to four countries. He's headed to
With that, I'd be happy to take your questions. We've got a lot going on today. Matt, do you want to start?
QUESTION: Yeah. I wasn't expecting that trip announcement so --
QUESTION: -- I'll defer to someone else first.
I think what
So these are a series of ongoing conversations that are being had right now.
STAFF: She did tweet about it.
QUESTION: Wait. You're referring us to a tweet for further questions? A hundred and forty characters?
Go right ahead.
QUESTION: Yeah, thank you. On the trip you just announced, so the Secretary will meet with Chairman Kim. Can you tell us who else he will be meeting, if you know that already? And also, what do you concretely expect from this trip to move on? There has been a bit of stall on the negotiations. Now what are the steps you expect from
QUESTION: I was saying before that, because the President canceled last trip, saying there wasn't progress enough--
Of course, we have quite a ways to go, but we look forward to the next steps in this conversation.
QUESTION: Which steps?
QUESTION: Okay. And --
QUESTION: And does the Secretary still stick from -- to his date of
QUESTION: I think it was for the denuclearization to be completed by.
QUESTION: Is it still the administration's position that you are not willing to consider any easing of sanctions until denuclearization has been -- full denuclearization has been verified, but that you are wiling to consider something short of -- to do things, confidence-building steps, that are short of sanctions, along the lines of what the Secretary himself talked about when he was in
QUESTION: So you still are -- you're willing to do that short of -- you're still willing to take steps that are short of sanctions relief?
QUESTION: Any consideration of a peace declaration of any type, Heather?
QUESTION: So the fact that --
QUESTION: -- hi -- that the Secretary is going, should we take that to mean that
QUESTION: And China -- now, I'm not changing the subject, just based on this trip. Are these going to be high-level meetings? I mean, is the Secretary satisfied that the Chinese are going to produce the people in the meeting that he wants to meet with and they're not -- I mean, this is going to be -- when you say his counterparts or his counterpart, this is going to be the foreign minister level and high-level meetings, right? They're not just producing junior ministers for these?
QUESTION: On China.
QUESTION: So in
QUESTION: So is the DSD still happening? Is the Diplomatic and Security --
QUESTION: Heather, the statement of the President recently, how he was in love with
QUESTION: But the President has also said a timeline doesn't matter. I mean, he keeps saying things which makes it sound as if the pressure's being eased off of the --
QUESTION: Well he did say the timeline doesn't matter.
QUESTION: That's not what they said in the
QUESTION: That isn't what the Chinese and the Russians said in the
QUESTION: Thank you, Heather. Do you know that North Korean Foreign Minister
QUESTION: Corresponding measures of
QUESTION: The declaration of the end of the war that the President Moon pressured to
QUESTION: Wait, wait, wait, hold on. This is on
QUESTION: I thought we wanted to stay with
QUESTION: Thank you, thank you. Thank you, Matt. I wanted to ask you about Israeli action in
Let's remember in large part what has gotten the Israelis and Palestinians to this point, and that is
QUESTION: But these kids get shot at at about four -- 300 meters away. I mean, they are in their own closed area. I mean, they're not basically jumping over the fence, they're not going to the Israeli side and so on. They are in their open prison territory.
QUESTION: Okay, I wonder if you would address the Khan al-Ahmar village, the Bedouin village, because all your allies have objected to it. Do you object to the demolition of this Palestinian bedroom village at Khan al-Ahmar?
QUESTION: Hi. The
QUESTION: Yeah, that were just out.
QUESTION: It was an imposter's editorial.
QUESTION: Yes, yeah.
QUESTION: Well, I had two more questions briefly. On Friday, the Russian foreign minister strongly criticized your position on
QUESTION: Okay, and final question, somewhat related to that: The Pentagon today, they suggested that the closure of the consulate in
QUESTION: Heather, since you --
QUESTION: Today, Iraqi parliament elected for presidency, and that means
Okay, go right ahead. Yeah.
QUESTION: There are some reports of fraud in the province of Sulaymaniyah, and two major opposition parties have rejected the outcome of the election. Have you heard those complaints? Are you --
Cindy, go right ahead.
QUESTION: Thanks. I know the Pakistani foreign minister may still be here in the building. Are there any updates on attempts to reset the relationship? And he hinted on
QUESTION: Can I follow up on that?
QUESTION: I just wanted to follow up. I know that there have been some comments out of the
QUESTION: Well, hold on. There seems to be -- this seem to have ignited a fair amount of outrage which the people on the call tried to tamp down and say was basically misinformed outrage, but -- and just look at the headlines of one of the advocacy groups that same-sex -- same --
QUESTION: Heather, I read -- I believe everything I read, absolutely everything.
QUESTION: But it said
QUESTION: I was --
QUESTION: That is neither here nor there, but I was joking when I said I believe everything I read. But I just wanted you to say -- I mean, some of this stuff is like same-sex people were going to be ripped from their families and if they don't get married they're going to be deported. The people on the call said that that was not correct, that there would be exceptions made for people who were in tenuous circumstances, but I -- but they were all on background. No one was willing to put their name to it. So can you say from the podium --
QUESTION: Well, I just want someone from this administration --
QUESTION: I know.
QUESTION: I get it.
QUESTION: I get it. I'm not --
QUESTION: I'm not looking for a defense of background calls.
QUESTION: I'm wondering if you are prepared to say on the record that what they said on background, which was that this won't -- that people are not going to be ripped -- that families aren't going to be torn asunder, that -- and the other thing that they said was that this is actually a way for the administration to promote marriage equality. And while it may be, it's an awfully odd way to do that.
QUESTION: On that call there were a number of questions that just weren't answered, and one of them is --
QUESTION: Okay. So one of the questions that wasn't answered was on the special envoy position for LGBTI rights. Is that going to be filled? Is it --
QUESTION: All right.
QUESTION: Hi, Heather. Just very briefly on
QUESTION: Back to
QUESTION: I'm fine.
QUESTION: I was going to ask -- thank you, Heather, for -- you mentioned earlier about
QUESTION: Numerous S-300 surface-to-air missiles have been sent to
QUESTION: Can you -- also on
QUESTION: Okay. And then the other thing on
QUESTION: Well, what exactly are these people doing, or will they do? What do they do? When they get up in the morning, after they eat breakfast --
QUESTION: No it's not. Well, let's just say that --
QUESTION: Or are doing right now.
QUESTION: Well, no, I'm looking at this minute.
QUESTION: I'm not looking for a minute-by-minute update, but this is all stuff that you guys had been funding and you're no longer funding. So they are doing -- they are working doing projects that other countries like the Saudis and the Emiratis are funding? Is that correct?
Okay, and then we're going to have to wrap it up pretty soon. Go right ahead.
QUESTION: Thank you. The Chinese foreign ministry yesterday said
QUESTION: Is it fair to say that the
QUESTION: Heather, just very quickly on the --
QUESTION: Thanks. I do want to go back to
QUESTION: Really? More colorful than the President?
QUESTION: This is specifically the rhetoric from
QUESTION: This is specifically the rhetoric from
I'm going to have to wrap it up. Michel, go right ahead.
QUESTION: News reports coming from
QUESTION: Heather, just back on
QUESTION: It still is the administration's position that the -- that
QUESTION: So what does it --
QUESTION: Right. So --
QUESTION: So human rights aren't a priority anymore?
QUESTION: Well, I just wondered --
QUESTION: So Secretary Pompeo will raise --
QUESTION: So Secretary Pompeo, during his denuclearization talks, will raise human rights with
QUESTION: All right. Well, what does it say to you then, if you still believe that this regime is a horrible violator of human rights, kills people wantonly, jails them for their religious beliefs and political beliefs, what does it say to you that the President of the country, this country, says that he is in love with the leader?
QUESTION: Is the Secretary is love --
QUESTION: Is the Secretary in love with him?
(The briefing was concluded at