Mattis: North Korea meeting involving allies, not worried about administration changes

Matt Saintsing
March 27, 2018 - 12:55 pm

Photo by State Department

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Defense Secretary Jim Mattis says preparations for talks between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un involves regional allies, and that the meeting is still on, expected to occur in May.

“It’s a very methodical process getting together with our allies, Japan and ROK, the Republic of Korea,” Mattis said of the meeting Tuesday.

Mattis added that this meeting was by and large a diplomatic effort being led by the State Department.

“There’s an acting secretary right now, and the people that actually do the crafting,” Mattis said. "These are the people that roll up the sleeves and do the work.”

Trump intends to nominate current CIA Director, and West Point graduate, Mike Pompeo as the nation’s top diplomat.

There’s no doubt that the changes in the national security landscape has rattled Washington, but Mattis said they have no impact on Pentagon operations.

“We have very strong institutions in this country, and they continue,” he added.

When asked whether he could confirm reports that Kim may have visited Beijing, Mattis said “It kinda looked like he did, but I don’t know.”