TOWOIT #168

July 7, 2017… Day 169

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Good news. Healthcare bill still not going well for Republicans.

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And Malala popped up to say hello to Twitter. It was her last day of high school.

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Questions from today’s press briefing by Tillerson and Mnuchin on the G20:

  • Mr. Secretary, Nick Waters from Bloomberg News. Can you tell us whether President Trump said whether there would be any consequences for Russia to the interference in the U.S. election? Did he spell out any specific consequences that Russia would face? And then also, on the Syria ceasefire, when does it begin? And what makes you think the ceasefire will succeed this time when past U.S.-Russian agreements on a ceasefire have failed?
  • Mr. Secretary, you spoke, when you were speaking of the ceasefire, about there being detailed information about who would enforce it. Can you give any more information on what conclusions were reached? And you spoke of the future leadership of Syria. Do you still believe that Assad has no role in their government?
  • Does the administration still believe that Assad has no role in the future government of Syria?
  • Thank you. Demetri Sevastopulo, Financial Times. On North Korea, did President Putin agree to do anything to help the U.S. to put more pressure on North Korea? And secondly, you seem to have reached somewhat of an impasse with China in terms of getting them to put more pressure on North Korea. How are you going to get them to go beyond what they’ve done already? And what is President Trump going to say to President Xi on that issue tomorrow?
  • And you haven’t given up hope?
  • Thank you. Mr. Secretary, I have issue — you just mentioned on the DPRK. We note China and Russia recently said — they asked North Korea to stop the — to freeze, actually, the nuclear activities, and also they asked the U.S. to stop the deployment of THAAD system. So did President Putin bring up his concern about the deployment of THAAD system? And also, what’s the expectation of President Trump on tomorrow’s meeting with President Xi Jinping, other than the DPRK issue? Thank you.
  • Margaret Talev with Bloomberg. Mr. Secretary, could you give us a roadmap? Did you agree on a next set of talks between the President and Mr. Putin? And I guess I have kind of like a fluffy, color question on general impressions. We thought this was a 30-minute meeting.  It ended up being 2 hours and 16 minutes. That’s a lot of time to watch those two leaders interact and also to just — whatever. Any insights on all those? Also, real quickly, any update on the dachas? Are they getting them back? And on Ukraine sanctions, any resolution or progress on those? Thanks.
  • Thank you very much. Mr. Secretary, can you say if the President was unequivocal in his view that Russia did interfere in the election? Did he offer to produce any evidence or to convince Mr. Putin?

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