Chief of Staff Kelly on North Korea: 'Let's Hope That Diplomacy Works'

| OCT 12, 2017 | 7:19 PM

Ed Jones/Getty Images

Chief of Staff John Kelly weighed in on the escalating conflict with North Korea during a rare press briefing appearance on Thursday, telling Americans they should be “concerned” regarding the rogue nation's mounting threat.

“The American people should be concerned about a state that has developed a pretty good ICBM (intercontinental ballistic missile) capability and a good nuclear re-entry vehicle,” Kelly said.

“I believe I speak for the administration that that state cannot have the ability to reach the homeland,” he continued, relaying that there is “concern” over North Korea's ability to strike Guam, a United States territory.

Kelly added that while the administration currently believes the “threat is manageable” if it continues to increase, the chief of staff offered this warning: “Well, let's hope that diplomacy works.”

The president has also provided similar striking comments regarding the ongoing conflict with the Kim Jong Un-led nation. During his first address at the United Nations, Trump said he would “totally destroy North Korea” if such action was required.

North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho continued to ratchet up tensions this week, claiming the president's comments have already “lit the wick of war,” promising to “settle the final score, only with a hail of fire, not words.”

Watch the chief of staff's comments below, via CNN.