Defense Secretary James Mattis on Wednesday sought to downplay President Trump’s earlier assertion that seemed to rule out a diplomatic solution to North Korea’s ongoing missile tests.

“The U.S. has been talking to North Korea, and paying them extortion money, for 25 years. Talking is not the answer!” Trump tweeted Wednesday morning.

Mattis broke from that view, telling reporters asking about the tweet at the Pentagon, “We’re never out of diplomatic solutions.”

“We continue to work together, and the minister and I share responsibility to provide for the protection of our nation our populations and our interests, which is what we are here to discuss today,” Mattis said alongside South Korea Defense Minister Song Young-moo.

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