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John Kerry interview Trump’s tweets create ‘politics of chaos’

Former US Secretary of State John Kerry at an event in Brussels, Belgium in October 2016

(Keystone)

In an interview on Swiss TV, former US Secretary of State John Kerry has criticised President Donald Trump's use of Twitter to communicate publicly saying it creates a “politics of chaos”. 

"More and more Americans are finding the tweet phenomenon disturbing, untimely, and interruptive of genuine dialogue. It creates a politics of chaos that’s not good," Kerry told Swiss public TV, RTS, in an interview on Thursday. 

Recently, Kerry’s successor Rex Tillerson has been dogged by rumours about rifts with Trump over policy. Earlier this month, Trump undercut Tillerson in a Twitter message, saying the secretary of state was wasting his time trying to negotiate with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. 

Tillerson has minimized tensions with Trump but Kerry described the current situation and communication via Twitter as “unprecedented" and "very, very, very un-productive”. 

While stating that he did not want to "personally attack" a president on TV, Kerry said "what is happening in the United States right now is not normal behaviour. And many people are deeply concerned about the way decisions are made and the lack of a strategy. This is unprecedented," the former US senator repeated. 

“This kind of chaotic presidency has never been seen before.” 

Last week, Trump announced that he would no longer back the Iran nuclear deal in its current form and said he would terminate the Obama-era pact if Congress can't come up with new legislation satisfying him on the agreement. Justifying his decision, Trump said the US has been taken advantage of in negotiations conducted by the Obama administration and that he was tired of it. 

The former Democratic presidential candidate, who negotiated the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers, told RTS that Trump's decision was dangerous: “Before the agreement, Iran had the capacity to build 10 to 12 atomic bombs, and was two months away from achieving it. Now they can't do it anymore, they've changed course. To undo this, or even to encourage a potential conflict, is madness.” 

Addressing a private lecture delivered at Geneva's Graduate Institute on Thursday evening, he added that ending a nuclear deal with Iran could worsen the North Korea situation: "If you want to negotiate with Kim Jong Un, and your goal is to avoid war and try to be able to have a diplomatic resolution, the worst thing you can do is first threaten to destroy his country in the United Nations."

In June, Trump announced his decision to withdraw the US from the Paris climate agreement, saying it would harm US industries, cost US jobs, weaken American national sovereignty and put the country at a permanent disadvantage to other nations. 

While regretting Trump's decision, which he said had been taken "without any scientific reason", Kerry told RTS he thought the US would not only meet the goals of the Paris agreement but “exceed them” thanks to the mobilisation of American mayors, cities and states who support the pact. 


swissinfo.ch/sb

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