U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Sunday his diplomatic efforts will continue as long as they possibly can despite the saber-rattling on both sides of the Pacific.
Pressed repeatedly on the subject by Tapper on Sunday, Tillerson refused to budge.
Trump, who was condemned worldwide for refusing to certify the nuclear deal with the "fanatical regime" in Iran on Friday, tweeted two weeks ago to say Tillerson was "wasting his time" by trying to negotiate with North Korea and told him to "save your energy".
He did not, however, deny it. "They feed on one another in a very destructive way". "I don't work that way, I don't feel that way, and I'm just not gonna dignify the question".
Tillerson is among the most senior officials in Trump's Cabinet and White House who remains in his job, after a series of high profile resignations and firings. "But it's the first part" - the "castration" of Tillerson - "that I am most exercised about".
"The president has also made clear to me that he wants this solved diplomatically", Mr Tillerson said. "It actually enjoys the status quo".
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"I think Secretary Tillerson, Secretary Mattis and Chief of Staff Kelly are those people that help separate our country from chaos", Corker told reporters at the time when asked about allegations of bad blood between Trump and Tillerson.
The secretary of State said he's fully committed to Trump's objectives.
"US Republican senator Bob Corker stepped up his public feud with Donald Trump on Friday, saying the presidents undermining of his secretary of state was like castrating him in public". Bob Corker's comments suggesting Trump's foreign policy statements, like the ones he's posted on Twitter, "castrate" the secretary's diplomatic efforts.
"I'm not playing", Tillerson told Tapper, after Tapper asked about the alleged "moron" comment.
But Tillerson said suggestions that he's been undermined have no basis in fact.