S. Korean, U.S. diplomats discuss bilateral, regional issues on Friday


South Korea’s deputy foreign minister
Kim GaN met his US counterpart David still in Washington on Friday to discuss
bilateral and regional issues the two diplomats reportedly exchanged views on
regional security and defense cost-sharing talks they also agreed to
work together on other issues including cooperation for South Korea’s new
southern policy and the u.s. indo-pacific strategy
Seoul and Washington planned to hold a meeting between South Korean foreign
minister Kang Yong Hwa and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo later this month

Remarks at Texas A&M University – The Impact of Diplomacy on Daily Life


(Applause.) SECRETARY POMPEO: Thank you. (Applause.) Thank you. (Cheers and applause.) Thank you very much. And thank you, Jerica,
for that kind introduction. Now, as the Secretary of State, we do diplomacy,
which means you have to get the protocol right. So, howdy. AUDIENCE: Howdy. (cheers) SECRETARY POMPEO: It’s great to be in Texas,
one of the greatest countries in the world. (Laughter and applause.) You know — yeah, I just came back from
South America, now Texas, and I’ll return to the United States
in the morning, yes. (Laughter.) You know — seeing you all here reminds me
of a George Patton quote. He said, “Give me an Army of West Point
graduates and I’ll win a battle. But if you give me a handful
of Texas Aggies, I’ll win a war.” (Cheers.) That’s tough to take
from a West Point graduate. (Laughter). Look, I understand that this institution has
sent more of its graduates into the military than any other university other
than our military academies. It’s because you all are tough, you’re
committed, and you want to serve. You should be proud of that,
and I love it. And it’s why I really wanted
to be here today. I want to thank, too – I want to thank the
Wiley family for making this series possible. Like Jessica [Jerica] said, everyone here –
Cadets, Bush school students, anyone looking to give back to America – should consider potentially one day working
for the United States Department of State. Now, I know, I get it, diplomacy doesn’t sound
as thrilling as firing anti-tank weapons, flying F-16s, crawling through mud. There’s no “Top Gun” version
of the State Department. Instead we get “Madame Secretary.” No offense to Tea Leoni,
those of you who are her fans. But there’s a good reason that many former
military officers end up working as diplomats serving our country. It’s because the work that we do is important
for our soldiers, the soldiers need us, and we need them. Neither diplomacy nor the military
can succeed at delivering for presidents
and for our country without the other. And I’m not the first guy
to figure this out. In 1946, President Truman was traveling. President Truman was traveling
with Winston Churchill to Missouri, where Churchill would deliver
his famous “Iron Curtain” speech. He delivered it there at Westminster
at a local college. On the train, Truman showed Churchill
a recent re-design of the presidential seal. The eagle’s head was turned to the right,
so it faced the talons holding olive branches. Now, that represented diplomacy. But rather than having the eagle turn to face
the arrows, which represented war, Churchill pondered for a moment
and he said, “I think the head should be on a swivel,
back and forth.” In other words: Diplomacy and military
strength go hand in hand. They are indeed intimately related. Each relies on the other. I saw this as a young Army captain
way back in the 1980s, when I patrolled that very Iron Curtain
that Churchill spoke about. I had the incredible privilege, along with
my fellow soldiers, we were there to deter the Soviets and indeed prepare
this country for the worst. But ultimately, it wasn’t our tanks
that delivered that victory. It was diplomacy, backed by the credible threat
of force that we had projected. Aggies have a long history in the military. But you also have a long history serving America’s
diplomatic mission at the State Department, and I’d love that to continue. If you join us, if you work, it will make
a difference in the life of every American. Now, I’m going to speak just
for a couple more minutes because I want plenty of time
to take your questions. But before I do, I want to talk briefly
about three aspects of my life, of the State Department’s work. First, it’s an incredible element
of promoting national security. As they did during the Cold War, diplomats
build relationships to ensure that disagreements never boil over into military conflict. Take Jerica, you just heard from,
and her team. They’re talking to Mexican authorities
to alleviate migrant crisis and to secure our border. Her colleagues are confronting the opioid
crisis by encouraging partners to cut off the drug flows, that fentanyl that comes in the
United States and wreaks so much destruction. Just a few months ago, we saw the announcement
that China made that they would do their part to deny fentanyl access to our country. It was State Department’s diplomats
who sealed that deal. And farther from home, State has helped grow
the ranks of the Defeat-ISIS coalition, an enormous victory. We’ve seized back 100 percent of the caliphate,
liberating millions of Syrians. American diplomats were at the center of creating
that coalition and reducing threats to our citizens. Just this morning, I spoke with our ambassador,
who is working to bring peace in Afghanistan. There’s another graduate of this fine institution,
a young lady named Melissa. She is supporting our work there to broker peace
between the Taliban and the Afghan Government. We’re trying to end the longest war in United
States history and save the lives of Afghans and American soldiers alike. Or take a man named Steve Biegun,
a truly remarkable fellow. He’s one of my special reps. He’s working on the North Korea file. His team has gotten an international coalition
together to put the toughest sanctions in history on Chairman Kim Jong-un and his country. But Steve’s work is also important in that
we are keeping the door open, working to achieve a diplomatic outcome where North Korea will
be denuclearized in a way that brings peace to the peninsula. You know — Steve and our team have
gotten enormous results. I was privileged to be in North Korea where
Kim Dong Chul, Kim Hak Song, and Tony Kim were able to climb on an American airplane
and return home from their – to their families from being held hostage in that country,
a remarkable diplomatic achievement. Indeed, I’ll never forget the moment, the very
moment when they met their families on the tarmac. President Trump was there to greet them too, and I was thinking that morning – it was 3:00 a.m. Washington D.C. time – about the amazing work
that our team had done not just that day, but in the weeks
and months before that. Absent that great work,
absent the work of people like you who decided to join
the Department of State, they might well still be held in
the hands of the North Koreans. The second thing we do every day at the State
Department people don’t truly see directly: We make sure that our diplomacy
impacts the American people by strengthening the United States economy. The truth is we have to compete
in a global economy. The United States businesses need access
to markets all across the world. President Trump is determined to open
those markets for our products. That’s certainly true of companies
and businesses here in Texas where exports benefit your economy
to the tune of $260 billion a year. It supports more than 900,000 Texas jobs. And we help. We help by supporting these economic
opportunities through our diplomats. We work to open these markets where
there are some 1,600 economic officers stationed all across the world. We try to take down barriers. We try to make the case
for American companies and why they can deliver true value
to nations all across the world. Indeed, it’s the case that there
is seldom an engagement – I was in South America just
before coming here today. Not a single one of my conversa tions –
not in Chile, not in Peru or Paraguay or in Colombia did we miss the opportunity to make sure they understood that
America was there prepared to help create value for their countries as well. You’ve seen it in the work
we’ve done to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. But you should know it’s more
than just commerce. There’s a strategic element to this too. In Houston last month, I spoke to a group
to talk about how energy impacts each and every one of us, how there is
a national security component to America’s capacity to deliver energy
all around the world. We watch as a pipeline is being built in Europe,
which will tether Germany to Russia in a way that is not good for German security or the
security of the United States of America. The work that’s being done here in Texas
and Kansas and Oklahoma, all of the energy fields and in North Dakota – if done well,
can work with our diplomacy to deliver true security not only to America, but to Europe
as well. And you should know Aggies are also helping
State create a program to transport excess natural gas from right here in Texas to the
Dominican Republic, so it can be sold throughout the Caribbean. We want to make sure the lights are on for
your next spring break. (Laughter.) We’ve got another team, a team that’s
working to warn our friends and partners against buying Chinese 5G technology and build out
their infrastructure with Chinese equipment. These are companies like Huawei, which will
take your private information and transfer it to the Chinese Government. It makes no sense. And American diplomats are at the forefront
of sharing this information with the world. None of us want our privacy, our freedom falling
into the hands of the Chinese Communist Party. The final thing before I close: The State
Department helps with our American diplomats promoting and protecting our values – indeed,
our very way of life. The U.S. is the global standard-bearer for
democracy, for freedom, for liberty, and for human rights as well. If we don’t speak up, no one else will. A few months back, the United States made
the decision to leave the United Nations Human Rights Council. We did so because it had become under the
control of authoritarians and dictators, people that didn’t really care about human rights. We made the decision to move our embassy to
Jerusalem, recognizing facts on the ground. And our diplomats are even, as we speak, all
across the world promoting American values and human rights all across the globe. We’re working on various missions, including
making sure that the nature of Chinese Orwellian systems, particularly their clampdown on people
of faith, are impacting us right here at home. I recently had the privilege to meet with
a group of Uighur Muslims that came to my office. They talked about the systemic imprisonment,
they talked about oppression, and even torture happening in parts of China today. This cannot be allowed to stand. We’re exerting maximum pressure to change
the very nature of the Islamic Republic of Iran to make sure that that regime simply
behaves like a normal country and does not spread terror throughout the world. Today as we stand here, Iran is engaged in
conducting an assassination campaign throughout Europe. Our diplomats are working to push back against
them so this will stop. And my most recent trip was part of the effort
that’s being led by the Organization of American States and the Lima Group as we work
to restore human rights and democracy in Venezuela. I know that we will ultimately be successful
and that Mr. Maduro will leave that country. Our diplomats also go on offense to promote
American values, in part simply by building and maintaining a set of relationships that
are centrally important to our country. These deep friendships matter as time moves
on. Jerica mentioned some of the work that she
does with the youth in Ciudad Juarez. That’s a long-term investment in our relationship
with our partners to the south in Mexico. We trust that the young people that she’s
working with will come to understand America, that they will come to understand how much
we care about them. And when it’s their time to lead, they will
become good partners for our great nation. We do something different on a truly national
scale as well with foreign aid. We provide assistance to countries like no
other country in the world. Our goal is often to turn struggling nations
into strong, long-term partners, democratic partners for the United States. And in times of crisis, when we’ve offered
a hand, I can tell you that people like Melissa, the former Aggie stationed there in Afghanistan
today, will benefit from the American aid which we’ve provided to that country. About four years ago Melissa was in a tour
in Nepal when a devastating earthquake hit that country, killing nearly 9,000 people. She said it was one of her proudest moments
as an American diplomat. She watched as the embassy rallied to the
people’s side, allowing those in need to come seek services at our embassy, to shower
and to seek food and shelter at the American embassy. For her next tour, she went to Kabul. And just moments after she landed, another
earthquake. Everyone in the airport thought it was an
explosion, but she knew. She’d been through this before. She next traveled to Mexico City. The year was 2017. You’ll all remember it was one of the most
devastating earthquakes to hit the Mexican – Mexico City in decades. And Melissa saw the great work that the embassy
did to make sure that the people of Mexico City got back on their feet. I made sure that Melissa did not come to visit
with us today. (Laughter.) She will tell you that as a diplomat, there
was nothing more rewarding than watching American excellence, American graciousness, American
resources in power, to meet and help people in times of adversity. This is the life of an American diplomat,
and a noble undertaking, and one of true public service. There is a story. It’s about President Reagan’s secretary
of state, Secretary George Shultz. He understood diplomacy. He would meet with our ambassadors as they
went to the field. He would ask every ambassador who came by
his office just before they went out for their first assignment – he would give them a
pop quiz. He would take them over to the side of his
room, he would point them to a globe, and he would ask them – he would say, “Now
that you’ve been confirmed by the Senate, point to the country that you now represent.” And they’d all fail, because they’d point
to the country which they were leaving. Indeed, the correct place to point for every
one of our diplomats is their service to the United States of America. Secretary of State Shultz knew that, President
Reagan knows that, President Trump and I know that too. I know that you all have a tremendous sense
of duty, a tremendous sense of service. I hope that today you can see that America’s
State Department is committed to living up to those standards. And if our mission appeals to you after your
time serving elsewhere, we would love to have you come be part of our team. Thank you all for letting me be here today. Thank you for allowing me to be with you. Good luck, God bless you, and I look forward
to taking your questions. Thank you. (Applause.)

“Diplomatic Realism, Restraint, and Respect in Latin America”


SECRETARY POMPEO: Good morning. (Applause.)
Thank you. Thank you all very much. Good morning. It’s great to be here. You have beautiful
weather down here in Kentucky. (Laughter.) Senator McConnell, thank you so much for that
gracious introduction. It is – Senator McConnell has truly been a great partner of mine, of
the State Department, of the Central Intelligence Agency, in his role as the leader in the United
States Senate. It’s great to be back in Kentucky. You know
politicians always talk about being back, but this is true. I was stationed down at
Fort Knox not once, but twice. I know every bar in Elizabethtown. (Laughter.) It’s been
a couple decades, but I’ll bet I could still find them. (Laughter.) I do want to thank, too, the McConnell Center
and the University of Louisville for having me here. It’s difficult to come on campus.
The last time I interacted with the University of Louisville, you were beating my Wichita
State Shockers in the Final Four in Atlanta. (Laughter.) I am not emotionally over it.
(Laughter.) And so if I struggle today, you now know why. It’s great to be here. As a former soldier
too, I want to thank you for your Army Leadership Development Program here, and I especially
commend your emphasis on civic education. I see all these great leaders in uniform.
It reminds me of the first campaign commercial. The person putting it together said, “Hey
Mike, why don’t you get in your uniform?” And my wife said, “He might be able to fit
in his boots.” (Laughter.) So go look it up. Boots. It’s a great campaign commercial. And to those of you who are here as students,
great. I understand Senator McConnell said you’re missing class today. Is that right?
You’re welcome. (Laughter.) But I’m glad you’re part of this program. It represents
the finest of the American tradition, and it’s part of the reason that I am here today
as well. It’s part of my duty as America’s top
diplomat to explain to Americans how the State Department and the work that we do benefits
each and every one of you every day. And it’s important, too, that I get a chance to hear
from Americans outside of Washington, and I’ll do that when I get a chance to meet
with some of you just after that. I also come out here to recruit. State.gov – go check
it out. It’s a great place to work and serve America. So I’m on a recruiting mission
here in Kentucky as well. Back in May, I spoke at a place called the
Claremont Institute out in California. I used those remarks to talk about President Trump’s
vision for American foreign policy, and I told that group that President Trump is within
the American tradition, but is staring at this from the perspective of how the Founders
thought about American foreign policy. There were three central ideas if you go back and
read. First was this idea of realism. You have to
stare at the problem set as it is, not as you wish it were to be. The second idea is restraint: understanding
that we live in this unbelievably exceptional nation. We have an enormous privilege as American
citizens, and we have a special role to play in that world; but our power is not limitless,
and sometimes we must make difficult choices. And I’ll talk about that a little bit more
this morning. And the third idea is respect: respect for
our American principles and how other nations choose to run their affairs inside of their
own countries. And I want to talk about that today in the
context of a place that gets too little attention from us here in the United States, and it’s
the work that we do here in the Western Hemisphere, the place that we all live. I looked at the
list of where my previous – where the previous secretaries of state has traveled, and too
often there was neglect to the places most close to us. I want to start with the big picture in Latin
America. In just the last few years, we’ve seen some
truly remarkable things. Many nations have made a sharp turn towards democracy and capitalism,
good government, away from dictatorship and socialism and the corruption that has been
endemic in some of those countries. You see this just in the past few weeks. The
Bolivians are rebuilding their democracy even as we sit here today. No one in the region
any longer believes that authoritarianism is the way forward, that it’s the right
path, whether you stare at the people in Cuba or in Nicaragua or in Venezuela. They all
can see the path forward is different from what they have been living. When I was in Chile back in April, we saw
how people there used their new democratic power for good causes. In July, nations of
the region got together and began their first concerted effort to combat terrorism. Argentina
designated Hizballah as a terrorist organization – first time ever that they had contemplated
something like that. Regional multilateral organizations too, like
the Organization of American States and the Lima Group are members of a treaty called
the Rio Treaty. They have taken the lead. They have allowed America to be the supporting
effort in helping the Venezuelan people move towards achieving their desire for freedom,
liberty, and to simply take care of their own families. It was the summer, just a few months ago,
when the Organization of American States put out its first ever statement affirming the
right to religious freedom, something this administration has taken to heart and worked
on tirelessly. And Bolivia, as I said before, appointed its
first ambassador to the United States in over a decade. There is more democratic cooperation in our
hemisphere today than at any point in history, and we’re proud of the fact that we have
been a part of helping them get to that place. We do this for a couple of reasons. This gets
to how President Trump thinks about the world. We support it because people should be free
to exercise their unalienable right to self-government. We support it because political freedom goes
hand in hand with economic freedom, and economic flourishing, and trade with these nations
benefits the people here in Kentucky and all across America. And we support it, too, because it’s simply
the right thing to do. Authoritarian regimes don’t go easily, however.
Take a look at Maduro; he’s hanging on today. He rules Venezuela, but will never again govern
it. But make no mistake, he and other dictators like him will work to continue to suppress
their people. Cuba, too, has tried to hijack legitimate
democratic protests in its country and in the region to drive them towards their ideologic
ends. Colombia has closed its border to Venezuela out of concern that protesters from – terrorists
from Venezuela might enter. And the Maduro regime continues not to place
any value on human life and human suffering, and their current lawful president, Juan Guaido,
is working diligently to achieve that freedom for their people. You see, too, malign interference in the region.
We’ve worked tirelessly to push back against it. Today, in Venezuela, Rosneft, which is
Russia’s state-backed oil company, continues to prop up the corrupt and illegitimate Maduro
leadership. They take billions of dollars out of the Venezuelan economy each and every
year. We’ve tried to drive with moral and strategic
clarity the recognition that authoritarianism in our hemisphere is a threat – it’s a
threat to us here in the United States. We cannot tolerate these regimes inviting bad
actors in, and trying to turn allied democracies into dictatorships. Indeed, the Maduro regime
has permitted Iranians to come into their country, posing an even greater threat here
to the United States. And we’ve done so in a way that’s been realistic, within the
capacity of the American power to achieve the ends that we’re seeking to achieve. So what did we do? We rolled back the Obama
administration’s cuddling up to Cuba by applying heavy new sanctions. We’ve recognized
that engagement has not improved Cuba’s regime, it hasn’t made it better; the human
rights record was worse, the risk to the Cuban people was worse, and the risk to the United
States was worse, and their capacity to influence Venezuela even greater. So we’ve changed
that. We’ve allowed Americans to seek justice
by suing the regime in Havana to recover property that it stole a long time ago. It only makes
sense when Americans had their stuff stolen to give them a chance to get it back. And we’ve applauded countries that have
expelled Cubans who have come to live as doctors inside of their borders, who were really working
on behalf of the government. These doctors – this was a program that’s hard to fathom
sometimes. They sent doctors to countries all around the world. They traffic to generate
income for the Cuban leadership. So the doctors receive 10 or 20 percent of the revenue that
they generate, and the rest goes to fund the Cuban regime. We see these tyrants in the region for what
they are, and we craft policies to confront them, not to appease them. And this really gets to the second point.
Our policy on Venezuela is mixed with restraint. We’ve seen folks calling for regime change
through violent means, and we’ve said since January that all options are on the table
to help the Venezuelan people recover their democracy and prosperity. That is certainly
still true. But we’ve learned from history that the
risks from using military force are significant, so we’ve instead worked to deprive Maduro
and his cronies of oil revenue that goes to the – that should go to the Venezuelan people
in the regime’s pockets. We’ve been ruthless in attacking the drug
cartels that traffic drugs into the United States out of Venezuela. And we built a coalition. This administration
has often talked about going it alone. We built a coalition of 57 other allies and partners
to maximize both the economic and political pressure that we’ve put on the regime. And I was talking with Secretary Baker in
celebration of 30 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall. He reminded me that there
are critiques that say, well, Maduro is still there. You’ve been working on this for months
and months and he’s still there. And he reminded me that Eric Honecker was still in
East Germany until the day that he was not. And there were articles in the months leading
up to that glorious event for freedom across the world that, too, if we do it right and
do it well and represent American values, that Maduro, too, will fall. In July of 1989, Nicolae Ceaucescu said capitalism
would come to Romania “when apples grew on poplar trees.” And by December he was hanging from a rope.
The end will come for Maduro as well. We just don’t know what day. Our patience, too, can be seen in Nicaragua,
where President Trump is working on economic sanctions to restore democracy there. And
this demands some level of consistency and relentlessness, and the American people should
know that the Trump administration will continue to be relentless. Secretary Baker reminded me too that in 1950,
people were questioning why America hadn’t yet succeeded in bringing down the Soviet
Union. Then, one day in 1991, it was also gone. The end came slowly, and then it came
really fast. Unending pressure and sensible restraint was the right combination then,
and I’m confident that it is now as well. Lastly, our foreign policy is built on respect.
It’s respect for our principles as enshrined in our Declaration of Independence and our
Constitution, and respect for how our neighbors and allies run their affairs. President Trump knows too that a poorly secured
border violates Americans’ enjoyment of life and liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
It undermines the rule of law, compromises security, it enables human trafficking, and
the President’s taken on these problems. That’s a basic respect for American ideals. One of the diplomatic successes that I’m
most proud of is delivering on that obligation in partnership with Mexico and countries throughout
South America. It is diplomacy undergirded by frank talk, by respect between neighbors
and friends. We simply ask Mexico and the Northern Triangle
countries of El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala to do more inside of their own country to
stop the flow of illegal immigration coming towards Mexico and to the United States. We
had to cut off some foreign assistance to show that we were serious. But we didn’t tell them how to run their
country to address it. We just insisted that they be good neighbors, and look at the results. I’m pleased to say we’ve taken in each
of those countries important steps. For example, thanks to an amazing new leader
in Ecuador¹ – President Bukele – detentions of Salvadorans illegally trying to enter the
United States are down 80 percent. That’s really good work on his part. And our relationship
with El Salvador is stronger for it. We’ve returned foreign assistance; we will help
the El Salvadorians be successful and build out their own great country. In that same vein of respect, we’ve told
our friends that predatory Chinese activities can lead them to deals that seem attractive,
but in the end are bad for their people, bad for their own nation. But we don’t try to stop them from doing
business with the Chinese Communist Party. We work with them to strengthen their systems,
to strengthen transparency, to help them understand the threats that face their country from doing
deals where the Chinese loan them money and then foreclose on important assets inside
of their country. That’s respect. We let each leader make its own decisions, but we
do our work to help support them. In Haiti, as it’s tried to form a government
and overcome instability, we have offered a helping hand. Here in our hemisphere, the
United States has not rushed in with solutions forced in Washington; we have provided assistance. We’ve told the new Argentine Government
that we’re ready to work with them despite not seeing eye-to-eye on significant foreign
policy issues. That’s respect. And finally, it means respecting people’s
yearning to be free – we know this here in the United States – ensuring that religious
freedom can be had all across the world, that economic rights are protected, helping them
seize honest opportunities for prosperity in their own countries. We have seen protests in a number of nations
– in Bolivia, in Chile, in Colombia, and in Ecuador. Those protests reflect the character
of legitimate democratic governments and democratic expression inside of their countries. Governments
should respect that, the way democracies do. We are so blessed here. America remains the
greatest example in democracy in the history of the world. And so we in the Trump administration will
continue to support countries trying to prevent Cuba and Venezuela from hijacking those protests. And we’ll work with legitimate governments
to prevent protests from morphing into riots and violence that don’t reflect the democratic
will of the people. And we’ll be vigilant too. Vigilant that
new democratic leaders don’t exploit people’s frustrations to take power, to hijack the
very democracy that got them there. That’s the kind of respect that we owe to other governments,
for people, so that they can have democracy in their own nations. I’ll end here. So I want to spend – leave
plenty of time for questions. I’m proud of what we’ve done in the region.
There remains an awful lot of work to do in our own backyard, in our own hemisphere. The
good news is that the sun of democracy is dawning in many places close to us. Whatever its day brings, we’ll approach
it with our friends in a spirit of realism and restraint and support for the peoples
of our region. Thank you, and God bless you. God bless Kentucky.
And God bless the United States of America. Thank you for having me. (Applause.)

U.S.-China Diplomatic and Security Dialogue – Joint Press Availability


SECRETARY POMPEO: Good afternoon, everyone. Secretary Mattis and I are pleased to welcome
Director Yang and Minister Wei to the State Department for the second U.S.-China Diplomatic
& Security Dialogue. Welcome. Presidents Trump and Xi launched this dialogue
as a venue for candid discussions on issues affecting the U.S.-China relationship, and
we advanced these discussions today in preparation for the upcoming meeting between our two leaders
at the G20. As President Trump has made clear, the United
States seeks a constructive, results-oriented relationship with China grounded in fairness,
reciprocity, and respect. Personal relationships of trust and candor
will go a long way in achieving these ends. This is why I was truly pleased to engage
in friendly, constructive dialogue with Director Yang and Minister Wei today on a host of opportunities
and challenges between our two countries. Even as our countries confront important differences
in the bilateral relationship between the nations, our cooperation remains essential
on many, many central issues. For example, I expressed in our meeting today
the importance of remaining united in the pursuit of the final, fully verified denuclearization
of North Korea as agreed to be Chairman Kim in Singapore. This means maintaining pressure through the
continued strict enforcement of all UN Security Council resolutions. China’s cooperation in enforcing those UN
Security Council resolutions will help achieve meaningful breakthroughs on this important
denuclearization issue. I also expressed our desire to see further
cooperation from China in addressing Iran’s nuclear missile programs and other malign
activities. We hope to work with the Chinese Government
and Chinese energy companies in this regard. Bringing Iran’s oil export revenues to zero
is a critical component of this campaign, and we discussed this today. We also discussed how we can strengthen the
commitments made at last year’s dialogue, including deepening bilateral exchanges on
military and security issues and risk reduction in times of crisis. In addition to these opportunities to strengthen
our cooperation, I was forthright in addressing significant differences between our nations. I was clear, for example, that we have continued
concern about China’s activities and militarization in the South China Sea. We pressed China to live up to its past commitments
in this area. Regarding our strong ties with a democratic
Taiwan, I reiterated the U.S. policy has not changed and that we are concerned about China’s
increasing efforts to coerce others, constraining Taiwan’s international space. And finally, I stated the United States and
the international communities will continue to express our concerns with respect to China’s
repression of religious groups – Christian, Buddhists, and 800,000 to possibly millions
of Muslims that have been denied their freedoms. In closing, I want to state that this was
an incredibly productive conversation. The United States is not pursuing a Cold War
or containment policy with China. Rather, we want to ensure that China acts
responsibly and fairly in support of security and prosperity of each of our two countries. I hope that our discussions today as well
as the upcoming discussions between Presidents Trump and Xi will yield tangible results towards
this goal. I am confident that they will. Thank you. And I’d now like to invite Director Yang
to make his statement. Thank you, sir. POLITBURO MEMBER YANG: (Via interpreter) Dear
friends from the press, ladies and gentlemen, good afternoon. State Councilor and Defense Minister Wei Fenghe
and I are very delighted to come to Washington, D.C. and co-chair together with Secretary
of State Pompeo and Secretary of Defense General Mattis for the second round of Diplomatic
& Security Dialogue. Let me first thank our U.S. host for their
gracious hospitality. This morning, centering on the summit between
President Xi and President Trump during the G20 summit in Argentina in November, we had
an in-depth discussion, and we have had full communication on China-U.S. bilateral relationship
and major international regional issues of shared interest. The dialogue is candid, constructive, and
productive. We highly commend the strategic guidance of
summit diplomacy for China-U.S. relations, and we believe that under the current circumstances
the meeting between our two presidents is of great importance to maintaining the steady
and healthy development of China-U.S. relations. We agree to act upon the phone call of the
two presidents on November the 1st to step up communication and coordination and make
good preparations for the summit to ensure its positive outcomes. We also elaborate on our respective strategic
intentions and domestic and foreign policies. The Chinese side stresses that China is firm
on pursuing socialist – socialism with Chinese characteristics. Everything that we do is to deliver a better
life for the Chinese people, to realize rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. It is not intended to challenge or displease
anyone. China will stay on the course of reform and
opening up and a path of peaceful development. And we are committed to working with other
countries for a community with a shared future for mankind. China will remain a contributor to world peace
and global development, as well as a defender of the international order. China has all along committed itself to working
with the United States for non-confrontation, non-conflict, mutual respect, and win-win
outcome, and to make positive contribution to peace, stability, and prosperity in the
Asia Pacific and beyond. We believe that as the top two economies in
the world, the largest developing country and developed country, a healthy and steady
growth of China-U.S. relations is in the best interest of the two peoples and people of
the world. It is also the shared desire of the two peoples. The two sides will follow the direction and
principles set out by the two president, manage differences with mutual respect, and expand
cooperation in a mutually beneficial manner and work together to pursue a China-U.S. relationship
that is characterized by coordination and cooperation. The two sides agree to handle differences
and sensitive issues in a constructive manner. China reaffirmed its position on economic
and trade issues. The two sides agree to follow up on the consensus
reached by the two presidents in their latest phone call, to support the two economic teams,
to step up engagement and pursue consultation on issues of mutual concerns, and to seek
a mutually acceptable solution. The Chinese side highlights that China is
firmly resolved to safeguard its sovereignty and territorial integrity. The “one China” principle is the political
foundation for China-U.S. relations. Taiwan independent forces and their separatist
activities pose the biggest threat to peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait. The U.S. should recognize it clearly. We urge the United States to abide by the
“one China” principle and the three China-U.S. joint communiques and cautiously handle Taiwan-related
matters. The Chinese side also stressed that proper
handling of the Middle East situation, in particular matters related to Iran, is very
important. About the deal on Iran, it needs to be continued
to be implemented and observed to – and the two sides should make – contribute – make
continued contribution to peace and stability of the region. The Chinese side is committed to peace and
development in the Asia Pacific. We respect the United States interest in the
Asia Pacific. At the same time, we expect the United States
to respect China’s security interests in the Asia Pacific, China’s sovereignty and
development interests. China has undertaken some constructions on
its islands and reefs. Most of them are civilian facilities. The purpose is to serve the interest of the
Chinese people and also to provide public goods to others. At the same time, it is necessary for China
to build certain security facilities in response to possible threats from outside. We believe that no country should use any
excuse to engage in militarization in the region. Actually, to pursue militarization in the
region will not only undermine interest of regional countries, but will hurt the countries
who take these actions themselves. There’s no such a problem of the freedom
of navigation and overflight being obstructed, so to use the freedom of navigation and overflight
as an excuse to pursue military actions is unjustifiable. China respects human rights as other countries
must do the same. As President Xi points out, there is always
room for improvement on human rights. In China, people have the freedom to believe
or not believe in religion. They are all Chinese citizens. Their human rights have been fully respected
and protected. It is our hope that the United States could
respect the fact. All in all, China and the United States should
step up communication on the basis of mutual respect and work to handle well its own affairs. We believe that the strategic guidance provided
by our two presidents is very important, and we need to follow up on the consensus that
they have reached and further expand areas for cooperation – potential for cooperation. We agreed to continue to advance communication
in mil-to-mil relations, counterterrorism, law enforcement, counternarcotics, and the
abuse and smuggling of fentanyl, and also coordination and cooperation in people-to-people
exchange and at national levels and on major international regional issues, to better benefit
our two peoples and provide more public goods for the world. The two sides discussed in an in-depth manner
the Korean Peninsula issue. China reaffirmed its position and commitment
to denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, peace and stability of the Korean Peninsula,
and a solution through consultation and negotiation. China will continue to enforce strictly relevant
UN Security Council resolutions. China supports direct dialogue between the
United States and the DPRK and hopes that the two sides will meet each other halfway,
accommodate each other’s legitimate concerns, build trust, and advance denuclearization
process and the establishment of a peace mechanism in tandem. The two sides also exchanged views on Afghanistan
and other regional and international issues and agreed to step up communication and coordination
and play a positive role in seeking proper settlement to relevant issues. Ladies and gentlemen, next year marks the
40th anniversary of our diplomatic relations. For the past four decades, China-U.S. relations
have been moving forward despite all the twists and turns and have made historic progress
and have delivered benefits to both countries and the world. History and reality prove that cooperation
is the only right choice for both countries, and win-win can lead to a better life. For the fundamental interest of the two peoples
and people in other parts of the world, we hope that our two sides will work in concert
and come together, focus on cooperation, manage differences, and advance China-U.S. relations
along the right track. Thank you. SECRETARY MATTIS: Well, good afternoon, ladies
and gentlemen. And it’s been a pleasure to join Secretary
Pompeo in welcoming Director Yang and Minister Wei to Washington for our U.S.-China Diplomatic
& Security Dialogue. And we thank you both for making the long
trip, along with your delegation, from Beijing. Your visit reminds us that we build on a deep
history between the United States and China, one that stretches back to the earliest days
of our American experiment in democracy. Our meeting today is evidence of America’s
efforts to work toward a brighter future for both our peoples. President Trump’s National Security Strategy
makes it clear that competition does not mean hostility, nor must it lead to conflict. While our two Pacific nations may not always
agree, we recognize it serves both our people’s interests to cooperate where we can. High-level dialogues like this help diminish
the space between us as we explore areas where we share common interest and common purpose. To that end, as Secretary Pompeo stated, today
we discussed our shared desire to achieve the final, fully verified denuclearization
of North Korea. We reaffirmed our nation’s commitments to
enforcing the unanimous Security Council resolutions in pursuit of that goal for the good of all
mankind. As the Secretary of State touched on, we also
discussed the importance for all military, law enforcement, and civilian vessels and
aircraft, including those in the PLA Navy, the Chinese Coast Guard, and the PRC Maritime
Militia, to operate in a safe and professional manner, in accordance with international law,
as we seek peaceful resolution of all disputes in the South China Sea. Through candid discussions, we sought ways
to lessen tension, maintain open lines of communication between our militaries, and
reduce the risk of miscalculation. And we made clear that the United States will
continue to fly, sail, and operate wherever international law allows. The U.S. commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific,
one that is underpinned by the rules-based international order and regional stability,
is unwavering. Director Yang, Minister Wei, within our pursuit
to realize this vision for the region, I echo Secretary of State Pompeo’s words that the
United States seeks a constructive, reciprocal, and results-oriented U.S.-China relationship,
one that benefits the Indo-Pacific and the world. We continue our commitment to explore new
areas of cooperation on strategic issues of mutual concern like space, cyber, and nuclear
capabilities, as well as reinforce the importance of military-to-military exchanges for our
bilateral relationship. For we recognize our military ties can serve
as a source of stability for our two nations as long as we remain transparent and communicate
sincerely with one another. Along that line, the United States is committed
to finalizing a military-to-military crisis deconfliction and communication framework
with China while we seek ways to implement and enhance the existing confidence-building
measures, including what we call the Joint Staff Dialogue Mechanism. Director Yang, Minister Wei, thank you again
for coming to Washington today. Minister Wei, I look forward to continuing
this morning’s constructive conversation at our bilateral meeting this afternoon. And I now invite you to make your remarks. STATE COUNCILOR WEI: (Via interpreter) Friends
from the press, good morning. It gives me great pleasure to meet with you
here in Washington at the invitation of Secretary Mattis for an official visit to the U.S. and
also for the second round of Diplomatic & Security Dialogue. I want to thank our host, the Secretary Mattis,
for your gracious hospitality to my delegation. Just now, the two sides had candid and in-depth
discussion on how to follow up on the important common understanding reached between our two
presidents. I think this is a productive and positive
dialogue. The two sides share the view that the two
sides need to further step up strategic trust, properly handle differences, promote exchanges
and cooperation, so that this military relationship will be a source of stability for the overall
bilateral ties. As two major countries, we stand to gain from
cooperation and to lose from confrontation. Cooperation is the only option for us. Peaceful coexistence and cooperation between
the two militaries will be good news for our two countries and for the whole world, while
confrontation or conflict between the two militaries will spell disaster to all. China is committed to peaceful development. It follows a defense policy that is defensive
in nature. We will definitely not seek hegemony however
strong we may grow. The development of China’s defense capability
represents a growing force for world peace. The Chinese military stands firmly against
any separatist activities. We have an unwavering resolve in safeguarding
China’s sovereignty, security, and development interests. China always approaches its mil-to-mil relationship
with the U.S. with utmost sincerity and would likewise expect the U.S. to respect China’s
core interests and major concerns so that the two sides can work toward the same goal
and achieve a relationship defined by no conflict, no confrontation, mutual respect, and willing
cooperation, and contribute our part to peace and stability in our region and beyond. Thank you. MR PALLADINO: Thank you. We now have time for four reporters to ask
questions. We will call on reporters, and we ask that
each reporter limit their question to one. For the first question, I would like to call
on the Voice of America, Ms. Nike Ching. QUESTION: Thank you very much. Good morning. Secretary Pompeo and Mattis, on South China
Sea, what are specific things the U.S. and China are doing to build up military mechanism
to avoid conflict, and if there are operational changes? Mr. Secretary, how were Uighur and Taiwan
issues being discussed during your meeting with the Chinese counterparts? What is the U.S. asking for? Is strengthening U.S.-China – is strengthening
U.S.-Taiwan ties an irritant in U.S.-China relations? (Via interpreter) Director Yang, the world
at large has expressed concerns over the human rights situation in Tibet and Xinjiang. The Chinese Government has said it opposes
interference into domestic affairs of China. But is China ready to invite and facilitate
visits by U.S. officers and officials to visit those areas? SECRETARY POMPEO: Did you want to go first? SECRETARY MATTIS: Sure. In regards to our exercises and operations
in the South China Sea, the United States adheres strictly to international law and
the international maritime rules of the road, and we continue to operate anywhere in international
waters, international air space, as all nations are entitled to. So the most important thing is that we all
pay equal attention to international law. SECRETARY POMPEO: Your question to me was
with respect to Taiwan and the issue with the Uighur population. The U.S. policy has not changed since this
administration took office with respect to Taiwan; we honor the “one China” policy
and the three communiques. Every action that we have taken is consistent
with that, and we will continue to take actions that are consistent with honoring that commitment
that is a longstanding United States commitment. And the United States is also unequivocal
when it comes to human rights. We ask every country, China included – we
have discussions to make sure that they treat the people of their nations with the respect
and dignity that every human being is entitled to. And when it comes to religious minorities
in China, we had a conversation about how it is that we hope the Chinese will treat
their religious minorities and our concerns with respect to that. It was a good conversation and one that is
important to each of our two countries, I know. POLITBURO MEMBER YANG: In my opening remarks,
I said that in our discussion we talked about the issue of the South China Sea. China reaffirmed its principled position on
this issue and pointed out that China has indisputable sovereignty over islands in Nansha
and its adjacent waters. On its own territory, China is undertaking
some constructions to build civilian facilities and necessary defense facilities. That is the right of preservations and self-defense
that international law has provided for sovereign state that has nothing to do with militarization. They are legitimate. China is committed to addressing disputes
through dialogue and negotiation with parties directly concerned. China is working with ASEAN countries to fully
implement, fully and comprehensively, the DOC, and the consultation now COC is making
good progress. Well, right now the situation in the South
China Sea is trending toward greater stability. In our discussion just now, the Chinese side
made it clear to the United States that it should stop sending its vessels and military
aircraft close to Chinese islands and reefs and stop actions that undermine China’s
sovereignty and security interest. And we urge the United States to play constructive
role for peace and stability in the South China Sea. That will certainly help reduce security risks. Taiwan is an inalienable part of the Chinese
territory. On the basis of the “one China” principle. China has established diplomatic relations
with over 170 countries. We will continue to remain committed to the
“one China” principle that bears on China’s sovereignty and dignity, its security and
territorial integrity. That is an issue of principle. Matters related to Xinjiang are China’s
internal affairs. Foreign countries have no right to interfere. The Chinese Government attaches great importance
to social and economic development in Xinjiang and it has taken a host of measures to promote
stability, development, unity and people’s wellbeing. At the same time, within the confines of law,
the government has taken steps to crack down on ethnic separatist activities and violent
terrorist crimes to safeguard national security and life or property of the people. These measure have paid off. Right now, Xinjiang enjoys social stability. It’s economy is growing with a strong momentum,
and ethnic groups are existing with each other in harmony. We hope that the United States could respect
the fact and look at relevant matters in an objective light, and stop interfering in China’s
internal affairs. In Tibet, there is ethnic minorities are having
good relations, and their rights and interests are protected. A lot of foreign people have been to Tibet
and Xinjiang. Facts are facts. Thank you. STATE COUNCILOR WEI: Well, Taiwan is an inseparable
part from China. This is a position repeated by Director Yang. To achieve reunification is a mission for
our party and country. In the oath of allegiance to the U.S., there
is this sentence saying this is a nation under the God, indivisible. So it is the same with Taiwan. It is an inalienable part of China. So if there – it’s – this territorial
integrity is under threat, we will do it at any cost just like what the U.S. side had
in Civil War. MODERATOR: (Via interpreter) Now I will give
the floor to Chinese journalists, one question at one time. QUESTION: From Xinhua News Agency, I have
a question for Minister Wei. Could you brief us on China’s defense policy
and mil-to-mil relationship between China and the U.S.? STATE COUNCILOR WEI: Well, President Xi and
President Trump attach great importance to mil-to-mil relationship. So in every meeting they had, they always
talk about this issue. So under the guidance of the two presidents,
mil-to-mil relationship is moving forward and maintained stable growth on the whole,
despite some problems. To make this mil-to-mil relationship a source
of stability to the overall relationship is a consensus between our two sides. Now, we have kept the channel for strategic
communication open. We have established dialogue and consultation
mechanisms at various levels in counterterrorism, in peacekeeping, in humanitarian assistance. We have carried out many practical cooperation. By the end of this year, we will have maritime
security consultation and also a joint military exercise on maritime humanitarian rescue and
search. This year, we had three meetings with Secretary
Mattis. We have exchanged visits in Singapore. We also had in-depth discussion. This kind of meeting and consultation have
been conducted in constructive, candid manner. In enhancing mil-to-mil relationship and building
strategic trust and promoting practical cooperation, we had many candid discussion and reached
important common understandings. So in short, we believe that a stable mil-to-mil
relationship is very important for a stable overall bilateral relationship. It serves the interests of both countries. Now, at the crossroads of our bilateral relationship,
it is important for us to follow up on the consensus between our presidents. We need to prevent frictions from other regions
to spread into the military sector to keep this mil-to-mil relationship a source of stability. China is committed to peaceful development. It follows a defense policy that is defensive
in nature. It is enshrined in our constitution and the
charter of the Communist Party of China. It is a solemn pledge we made. I’m not just repeating official line. We will never seek hegemony or aggression
or expansion or arms race. The – development of China’s defense capability
represents a growing force for world peace and the development of China’s defense capability
is transparent. It is only for the protection of China itself
to protect Chinese people from war, to give them a life of peace. And this capability-building is also transparent. It is conducted in commensurate with the need
to safeguard China’s sovereignty, stability, and defense interests. China’s military spending also transparent. I have consulted my colleagues at the ministry
of finance. Our military spending is made public to the
world. We always report that to the United Nations. I think this can be made clear to all of you. China has been part of that UN report on military
expenditure. Thank you. MR PALLADINO: The next question, please. Wall Street Journal, Courtney McBride. QUESTION: Thank you. The Trump administration has cited China as
one reason for its planned withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty. And I wondered, Secretary Pompeo and Secretary
Mattis, whether you have raised the possibility of China participating instead in arms control
and what the response was, if so. And alternatively, should the U.S. withdraw,
this could open the door for U.S. deployment of missiles in Asia, and I’m curious from
the director and the minister what the Chinese response to that possibility would be. SECRETARY POMPEO: Thank you. We did not spend time talking in detail about
that issue today. MODERATOR: (Via interpreter) With CCTV. QUESTION: (Via interpreter) Thank you. Director Yang, can you elaborate on China’s
efforts for world peace and development, and in your view, how the current China-U.S. economic
and trade issues should be addressed? And can you comment on the prospect of China-U.S.
relations? Thank you. POLITBURO MEMBER YANG: (Via interpreter) For
the past four decades of reform and opening up, China has taken 700 million people out
of poverty, and the whole nation of nearly 1.4 billion people are enjoying much better
lives. The post-global financial crisis years have
seen China accounting for over 30 percent of global economic growth annually. Today China is the third-largest contributor
to the UN regular budget and the second-largest to its peacekeeping budget. China provides more peacekeepers than any
other permanent member of the UN Security Council. China is fully committed to the norms of international
relations that are centered on the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, and China
is more than ready to develop friendship and cooperation with all countries of the world. Our trade and economic relations are mutually
beneficial by nature and have delivered tangible gains to both countries and peoples. As part and parcel of the global industrial
chain, China-U.S. trade and economic relations help allocate resources globally in a more
efficient way, hence it is critical to the world economy. According to the U.S.-China Business Council,
trade and economic relations with China help every American family save $850 annually and
creates as many as 6 million jobs in this country, while the issues that exist in our
economic and trade relations are the result of our different economic structures, development
stages, and these issues can be resolved through dialogue and consultation. A trade war, instead of leading to any solution,
will only end up hurting both sides and the global economy. The Chinese side has kept the channel of dialogue
open. The door to negotiation remains open, and
let’s not forget how our two sides have successfully navigated through previous rough
patches in our economic and trade relations. I hope that our economic teams will follow
through on what the president agreed upon in their November the 1st phone call, carry
out equal-footed and good faith dialogue and communication, and before long find a mutually
acceptable solution. We are going to celebrate the 40th anniversary
of our diplomatic relations. For many years in the past, I have been to
many states in this country, and I have made many American friends. In my conversation and encounters with them,
I could feel their genuine friendship and goodwill toward China. Likewise, the Chinese people have this deep
friendship toward the American people. I for one believe that our friendship has
sunken deep roots in the hearts of our two peoples and will grow into a big tree with
thick foliage. The further development of China-U.S. relations
will for sure give our two peoples a greater sense of gain and satisfaction. As we mark the 40th anniversary next year,
we need to prove with greater progress that the great statesmen from both countries made
the right decision to open the door of exchange with each other and to establish diplomatic
relations, and that decision is the right one and that has delivered real, tangible
benefits to our two peoples. And I hope that in the next 40 years and longer,
with our concerted efforts on the basis of coordination and cooperation, China-U.S. relations
will score greater progress and achievements to bring greater benefits to our two peoples
and people across the world. Thank you. MR PALLADINO: And with that,
our press conference concludes. Thank you to all of our principals,
thank you to all of you. (In Mandarin.)

Secretary Pompeo Testifies on American Diplomacy to Advance our National Security Strategy


SECRETARY POMPEO: Good afternoon, Chairman
Corker, Ranking Member Menendez, and distinguished members. Thank you for the opportunity to be with you
today. During my confirmation hearing you asked me
to work on a host of world problems, and for 12 weeks I’ve been doing just that. I hope we’ll get a chance to talk about
each of those today. For the last few weeks I’ve been engaged
in three areas of particular interest to this committee: North Korea, NATO, and Russia. On the subject of Russia, I want to bring
something to your attention right off the bat today. Today, the Trump administration is releasing
what we’re calling the Crimea Declaration. I won’t read the whole thing. I will submit it for the record. It’s been publicly released as well. But one part reads as follows: “The United
States calls on Russia to respect the principles to which it has long claimed to adhere and
to end its occupation of Crimea.” End of quote. I want to assure this committee that the United
States does not and will not recognize the Kremlin’s purported annexation of Crimea. We stand together with allies, partners, and
the international community in our commitment to Ukraine and its territorial integrity. There will be no relief of Crimea-related
sanctions until Russia returns control of the Crimean Peninsula to Ukraine. This Crimea Declaration formalizes United
States policy of nonrecognition. There’s another indicator of diplomatic
progress I want to mention. This morning, Pastor Andrew Brunson, who was
imprisoned in Turkey for nearly two years, has been let out of jail at Buca. He’s still under house arrest, so our work
is not done, but it’s welcome progress – one that many of you have been engaged in and
something the State Department has been working on diligently as well. We will continue to work for the speedy return
of all Americans unjustly held captive abroad. President Trump will never forget about our
own. Our diplomacy on these issues is advancing
the goals of President Trump’s National Security Strategy, which laid down guiding
principles for American foreign policy in December. In late April, I started executing on the
strategy as Secretary of State. And today, on July 1st – excuse me, today
here we are, and I want to present you some progress. The National Security Strategy established
“Protecting the American People, the Homeland, and the American Way of Life” as the pillars
of our national security. On July 17th, President Trump stated his firm
conviction that “diplomacy and engagement are preferable to conflict and hostility.” These principles have guided our actions on
North Korea. President Trump’s diplomacy de-escalated
a situation in which the prospect for conflict was rising daily. Americans are safer because of his actions. As far as the Trump administration’s goals
on North Korea are concerned, nothing has changed. Our objective remains the final, fully verified
denuclearization of North Korea, as agreed to by Chairman Kim Jong-un. As a follow-up to the President’s successful
summit with Chairman Kim, on July 5th I traveled to North Korea to make progress on the commitments
that were made in Singapore. We are engaged in patient diplomacy, but we
will not let this drag out to no end. I emphasized this position in the productive
discussions I had with Vice Chairman Kim Yong-chol. President Trump remains upbeat about the prospects
for North Korean denuclearization. Progress is happening. We need Chairman Kim Jong-un to follow through
on his commitments that he made in Singapore. Until North Korea eliminates its weapons of
mass destruction, our sanctions, and those at the United Stations will remain – United
Nations – will remain in effect. Multiple UN Security Council resolutions require
North Korea to eliminate all of its weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile
programs. Those resolutions were passed unanimously,
and they remain binding. We absolutely need every single nation to
maintain the enforcement of those sanctions to which every nation is committed. The path ahead is not easy, but our hopes
for a safer world and a brighter future for North Korea endure. The National Security Strategy also calls
for “Peace through Strength.” President Trump’s engagement on NATO has
resulted in greater burden sharing that will strengthen the entire alliance against myriad
conventional and unconventional threats. Allies have spent more than $40 billion in
increased defense spending since 2016, and there will be hundreds of millions of – billions
of dollars more in the years ahead. Last year’s $14.4 billion in new spending
was a 5.1 percent increase. It was the largest in a generation. Eight allies will meet the 2 percent this
year; 18 are on track to do so by ‘24. The Trump administration is demanding that
every country make its own commitment. NATO will remain an indispensable pillar of
American national security. We know weakness provokes our enemies, but
strength and cohesion protect us. The more every NATO member contributes, the
better the alliance can fulfill its mission of deterring threats to each of our nations. This is the increased commitment that the
President wants. From the outset of this administration, the
National Defense Strategy and the Russia Integrated Strategy, our approach has been the same:
to steadily raise the costs of aggression until Vladimir Putin chooses a less confrontational
foreign policy, while keeping the door open for dialogue in our national interest. Between our two nations, the United States
and Russia possess over 90 percent of the world’s nuclear weapons. President Trump believes that two great nuclear
powers should not have a contentious relationship. This is not just in our interest but in the
interest of the whole world. He strongly believes that now is the time
for direct communication in our relationship in order to make clear to President Putin
that there is the possibility, however remote it might be, to reverse the negative course
of our relationship. Otherwise, the administration will continue
imposing tough actions against Russia in response to its malign activities. We can’t make progress on issues of mutual
concern unless we are talking about them. I’ve heard many of you on this panel say
that for years and years. I’m referring to key issues like stopping
terrorism, obtaining peace in Ukraine, stopping the civil war in Syria and delivering humanitarian
assistance, ensuring security for Israel, and shutting down all of Iran’s malign activity. And on the subject of Iran, President Trump
has said that “Iran is not the same country it was five months ago.” That’s because our campaign of financial
pressure, our withdrawal from the nuclear deal, and our full-throated support for the
Iranian people, which I articulated in a speech this past Sunday, are having an impact. In Helsinki, we sought to explore whether
Russia was interested in improving our relationship but made clear that the ball is in Russia’s
court. We defended America’s fundamental strategic
interests in Syria and Ukraine, and I personally made clear to the Russians there will be severe
consequences for interference in our democratic processes. I would also add that President Trump is well
aware of the challenges that Russia poses to the United States and our partners and
allies. He’s taken a staggering number of actions
to protect our interests. As just a few pieces of proof, I’d like
to cite the following: 213 sanctions on Russian entities and individuals in the Trump administration;
60 Russian spies expelled from the United States of America and the closure of Russia’s
consulate in Seattle in response to Russia’s chemical weapons use in the United Kingdom;
the closure of Russia’s consulate in San Francisco, cutting U.S. diplomatic staffing
by Russia by almost 70 percent; 150 military exercises have been led or participated in
Europe this year alone; more than 11 billion have been put forward for the European Defense
[Deterrence] Initiative; we made defensive weapons available to Ukraine and to Georgia;
and just last week the Department of Defense – this is after Helsinki – added an additional
$200 million in security cooperation funds to Ukraine. None of this happened for the eight years
that preceded President Trump. If it’s not enough for you, there’s a
long list. I’m happy to go through that, and I’m
guessing sometime today I’ll get that opportunity. I look forward to it. Finally, I want you to know President Trump
has stated that he accepts our intelligence community’s conclusion that Russia meddled
in the 2016 election. He has a complete and proper understanding
of what happened. I know; I briefed him on it for over a year. This is perfectly clear to me personally. I am also certain he deeply respects the difficult
and dangerous work that our patriots in the intelligence community do every single day,
and I know that he feels the same way about the amazing people that work at the United
States Department of State. Thank you, Chairman Corker.

WATCH: Full interview with Secretary Mike Pompeo on Syria, China and impeachment


JUDY WOODRUFF: Last week, we concluded our
10-part series on China. Earlier today, I sat down with the secretary
of state, Mike Pompeo, to ask him about a number of things we reported on in that China
series. I also asked him about his role in President
Trump’s controversial telephone call with the president of Ukraine. But we began with the news today that Turkish
troops have launched an assault in Northern Syria. Secretary Pompeo, thank you very much for
talking with us. MIKE POMPEO, U.S. Secretary of State: Judy,
it’s great to be with you. Thanks for having me on. JUDY WOODRUFF: I want to turn first to Syria. Today, as you know, Turkish armed forces crossed
the border into Northern Syria with a mission of, in essence, cleaning out, wiping out — wiping
up the Syrian Kurds, the YPG. Right now, it appears that we don’t know where
this invasion is going to end up. Does the U.S. take responsibility for whatever the
outcome is because the U.S. has given Turkey a green light? MIKE POMPEO: Yes, well, that’s just false. The United States didn’t give Turkey a green
light. JUDY WOODRUFF: President Trump spoke with
President Erdogan, and, after the call, the president said that Turkey would be moving
in. U.S. forces were withdrawn from the area. So there was a change in U.S. policy, one
that you had supported. You had supported staying close to the YPG, the Kurdish — Syrian
Kurdish U.S. allies that had helped in the fight against ISIS. MIKE POMPEO: Well, remember the mission, Judy. The mission was that, when we came into office,
there were people being beheaded, people being burned, people in cages. President Trump made
the decision that we would begin a campaign that would take down the caliphate. We have
succeeded in that. On the phone call on Sunday night, it became
very clear that there were American soldiers that were going to be at risk. And the president
made a decision to put them in a place where they were out of harm’s way. That’s what we
have done. President Trump has been unambiguous about
making sure that radical Islamic terrorism, wherever we find it, this administration will
take it seriously. And I think the success that we have had in Syria, along with many
allies of the defeat ISIS coalition that the State Department put together numbers countries
in the dozens and dozens. I’m confident that we will continue to protect
the American people from that terrorist threat. JUDY WOODRUFF: Have you personally changed
your thinking about being — viewing the YPG as U.S. allies? MIKE POMPEO: The Turks have a legitimate security
concern. We have talked about that. I have talked about that repeatedly. They have a
terrorist threat to their South. We have been working to make sure that we
did what we could to prevent that terror threat from striking the people in Turkey, while
trying to achieve what is in America’s best interest, the threat from radical Islamic
terrorism emanating from Syria. We will continue to do that. JUDY WOODRUFF: It’s striking, the Republican
opposition to this, not just the Senate majority leader, Republican Leader Mitch McConnell,
who said it’s a mistake, in essence. Lindsey Graham is — has called it a stain
on our honor, American honor. This morning, he said this will ensure the reemergence of
ISIS. MIKE POMPEO: Yes, that’s certainly not what
I believe will happen. I’m — I’m confident that President Trump
understands the threat. Remember where we were — and I love Senator Graham. He’s a
friend. But remember where we were when this administration came into office, and now just
judge us by our results. We have achieved a good outcome there. We
have taken down the caliphate. There are ISIS remnants that remain. We will continue to
be in a position to do what we need to do to keep the American people as safe as we
possibly can from this threat. But it is not only in Syria. It emanates from
Iraq. There are a dozen other countries where the threat from radical Islamic terrorism
continues to exist. And we, the United States, has to make sure we position our forces, our
resources appropriately to reduce that threat to the United States. That’s the — that’s the mission set, Judy. JUDY WOODRUFF: But just as a quick clarification,
you’re saying the U.S. doesn’t take responsibility for whatever the outcome is here, casualties,
ISIS reemergence, and so forth? MIKE POMPEO: We’re going to work to make sure
that ISIS doesn’t have the caliphate that extends across a broad swathe of Syria in
Iraq, which is the place that we found ourselves when this president took office. JUDY WOODRUFF: China. The “NewsHour” has just completed a series
of reports on China. And I want to ask you about what the administration is doing with
regard to China. Just yesterday, the State Department has been
and this week is stepping up sanctions on Chinese officials, Chinese firms that have
been involved in repressing Muslim minorities in China, the Uyghurs, the Cossacks, and others. But how complicit, my question is, is China’s
top leader, Xi Jinping, in all of this? MIKE POMPEO: Well, Xi Jinping leads the country.
Just like the leader of a tank platoon, a small business or a country, you’re responsible
for the things that happen in your name. We have watched this in the dust-up this week
with the NBA. But this problem extends far beyond this. The desire and the actions that had been taken
on the ground to take down the Muslim faith or destroy the Uyghur ethnicity in the West
there in China is something that the State Department has spoken out about loudly. And
we hope China will change its direction. We think — I think this is not only an enormous
human rights violation, but we don’t think it’s in the best interest of the world or
of China to engage in this kind of behavior. JUDY WOODRUFF: Will Mr. Xi himself be held
accountable in the end, do you think? MIKE POMPEO: We’re doing everything we can
to reverse the course of action that’s been chosen there. We have — we have now put 28 new countries,
Commerce Department, on the entity list, companies that were enabling the repression that’s taken
place there. The State Department did its part by placing visa restrictions. We are going to continue to talk about these
human rights violations. As the president has said in another context, in Hong Kong,
we want to make sure that these issues are handled in a way that is humane. JUDY WOODRUFF: Hong Kong. And you mentioned
what’s going on with regard to the NBA. The Chinese are now retaliating against Americans
who speak out in favor of the protesters in Hong Kong, the manager of the Houston Rockets,
the professional basketball team. They’re now pulling — they won’t air a couple of
NBA games in China as a result. Is what their — how appropriate is this?
What does it say about China that they’re doing this? MIKE POMPEO: Yes, I think American businesses
have the right to make the decisions that they make, as long as they’re lawful. They
will have to make their own business decisions. But I think not only what we saw this week,
but this has been going on for sometime. I think American businesses are waking up to
the risks that attend to their company. It may seem — it may seem that it makes profit
in the short run, but the cost, the reputational cost to these companies, I think, will prove
to be higher and higher, as Beijing’s long arm reaches out to them and destroys their
capacity for them, their employees, in the NBA’s case, team members and general managers
to speak freely about their political opinion, something that we value so deeply here in
the United States. JUDY WOODRUFF: There’s been talk, as you know,
about whether Hong Kong authorities will have the Chinese army involved in dealing with
the protesters. Does the U.S. have a plan for what it would
do if that happened? MIKE POMPEO: The president has made clear
our objectives there and the way that we want to make sure this proceeds. China made a commitment. It was with the United
Kingdom, then submitted to the United Nations. They made a series of promises. And I think
the whole world’s watching. They’re watching Beijing to see if it truly will live up to
the commitments that it made. It made promises to the people of Hong Kong
and, indeed, to the world about their system, one country, two systems. Our expectation
is, they will continue to live up to that. And to the extent that they take action, the
president has said it needs to be the case that they behave in a way that is humane. JUDY WOODRUFF: The — our reporter Nick Schifrin,
when he was in China, did extensive reporting, talked to a lot of officials about exporting
— Chinese exporting their surveillance technology to many other countries, so that they can,
frankly, surveil on their own citizens. Is it too late to stop the spread of Chinese
technology for those kinds of purposes? MIKE POMPEO: Judy, the world has got to make
some decisions. And every country will make its own sovereign one. I have been out talking about this for a year-and-a-half
now. The Chinese Communist Party has access to information that runs across Chinese networks.
It’s in their basic laws. I don’t think it’s in the best interest of
any country to take the data from their private citizens, and place it in the hands of the
Chinese Communist Party. And I ultimately believe that the world will
see that communications network that are built on Western values of openness, transparency,
rule of law, contracts, property rights, all the things that we have come to know and rely
on for our capacity to communicate around the world, I think the world will see that,
and they will demand that every network, every system comply with those rules. So, no, I don’t think it’s remotely too late. JUDY WOODRUFF: In the so-called Belt and Road
Initiative, China exporting its infrastructure expertise around the world, it’s clear now
— I mean, Nick Schifrin talked to a number, again, of officials who say the Chinese are
everywhere with this. And they’re — they say the U.S. is just not
on the playing field. MIKE POMPEO: Yes, so China is free to have
their companies compete around the world. We want that. We encourage that. If they show up with a straight-up transaction,
and a Chinese company beats a European company or an African country or an American company,
so be it. That’s fair. That’s reasonable. But what you have seen and what we are pushing
back against — and I will concede that, for 20 years, the world under-reacted to this,
not only the United States, but all of the West. What you’re beginning to see is an acknowledgement
of this challenge, where these transactions aren’t fair. They’re showing up with money in brown paper
bags. They’re putting debt on nations that they can’t possibly repay, so that they will
ultimately be able to exert political influence. I think the world is waking up to these threats
and these risks. And I am confident that, over time, this will not prevail. And to say that America is not present is
just inaccurate. JUDY WOODRUFF: In just the short time that
we have left, I want to raise Ukraine. You were on that phone call between President
Trump and President Zelensky of Ukraine. Did you think at the time when you heard it
that what the president was asking for was appropriate? MIKE POMPEO: You know, everyone keeps asking
you about what the whistle-blower said on this phone call. I heard last night people
talking about someone heard the call and was frightened. Well, we have the readout from the call. We
have what was the best effort to put together a transcript from the call. And I know what this administration has done
with respect to Ukraine. We have worked diligently on this. I’m proud of our results. I remember where Obama left Ukraine. It left
it at 80 percent of the size that it was when he came into office. And Vladimir Putin hasn’t
done that. And I think, frankly, the most important reaction
to that call, because I — I was on it — I — I was on the call. I listened to it. It
was consistent with what President Trump has been trying to do, to take corruption out.
I found that to be wholly appropriate, to try and get another country to stop being
corrupt. But the most important reaction is from President
Zelensky himself, who said, no, I didn’t feel pushed, I didn’t feel pressured. Everyone keeps suggesting that, somehow, there
was undue pressure. I assure you, countries all around the world every day call me to
try and get America to behave in the way that’s in the best interest of their country. They
try to apply pressure to me. And we work on it. We work on it diplomatically
to achieve good outcomes for the American people. And the results, the results that
President Trump has achieved with respect to our relationship with Ukraine, I think,
will stand on their own as a hallmark of success of the State Department and what this administration
has done. JUDY WOODRUFF: Well, just finally, you know
that there’s been no proof any misdoing on the part of Vice President Biden. MIKE POMPEO: You all keep repeating that line,
as if you’re working for the DNC. JUDY WOODRUFF: I’m definitely not working
for the DNC. I’m an independent journalist. But they’re — the European Union, the U.S.
Embassy in Kiev, the International Monetary Fund, and other international organizations
felt that that prosecutor was corrupt and thought he should be removed. There’s no evidence that what Vice President
Biden was doing was corrupt in some way. So, my question is, where’s the — where’s
the rationale behind this? MIKE POMPEO: There is no one who has stared
at Ukrainian activity over the last years that doesn’t understand the risk of corruption
from that government, oligarchs behaving in ways that are deeply inconsistent with basic
fundamental rules of law, principles, private property. You — no — no one disputes that. For a nation
to seek help from another country, to say, did you mess around in our elections in 2016,
was there a corruption that was engaged in, that is completely appropriate activity. JUDY WOODRUFF: Have you decided, just finally,
that there will be cooperation with the House impeachment inquiry? MIKE POMPEO: Oh, goodness, I have made clear,
I think the White House has made very clear, we will ensure that we do everything we’re
required to do by the law and the Constitution, every time. JUDY WOODRUFF: Secretary Mike Pompeo, thank
you very much. MIKE POMPEO: Thank you, Judy.