The political battle lines in Washington are clearly marked. And former US Secretary of State John Kerry has made it clear which side of the growing divide he’s planted his own flag on.
Rather than supporting the president of his nation, it appears Kerry may be encouraging one of America’s top adversaries to remain defiant.
Back channel talks saw US Secretary State Mike Pompeo attack his predecessor John Kerry for his meeting with Iranian officials, accusing him of ‘actively undermining’ the Trump administration’s policy toward Tehran.
‘What Secretary Kerry has done is unseemly and unprecedented,’ Pompeo said in a news conference, followed by ‘…[he] ought not to engage in that kind of behaviour. It’s inconsistent with what the foreign policy of the United States is, as directed by this president. It is beyond inappropriate.’
Kerry criticised for ‘illegal’ Iran talks
Pompeo’s strong criticism precedes President Donald Trump’s late-night tweet which accuses Kerry of ‘illegal’ meetings in Iran.
‘John Kerry had illegal meetings with the very hostile Iranian Regime, which can only serve to undercut our great work to the detriment of the American people. He told them to wait out the Trump Administration! Was he registered under the Foreign Agents Registration Act? BAD!’
As reported by AAP, during a radio interview with Fox News as part of his book tour, Kerry claimed he had only met with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif ‘three or four times’ following the end of his term in January 2017.
He took to twitter to in retaliation to Pompeo’s comments, saying ‘Mr. President, you should be more worried about Paul Manafort meeting with Robert Mueller than me meeting with Iran’s FM’. Here he is referencing Trump’s ex campaign chairman who agreed to assist federal investigators on Friday, over the Russian interfering in the 2016 US election.
‘There’s nothing unusual, let alone unseemly or inappropriate, about former diplomats meeting with foreign counterparts,’ Matt Summers a spokesman for Kerry said in a statement.
‘What is unseemly and unprecedented is for the podium of the State Department to be hijacked for political theatrics,’ he said.
This past week Kerry has accused the Trump administration of pursuing a policy of regime change in Iran.
But Pompeo hit back, saying that was not the intention of the administration.
‘This is a former secretary of state engaged with the world’s largest state sponsor of terror …’ Pompeo told reporters, adding: ‘He was telling them to wait out this administration. You can’t find precedent for this in US history.’
It appears that the disgruntled former US Secretary State is actively undermining Trump, encouraging defiance within the administration.
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