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Nikki Haley

Ambassador Nikki Haley said the UN has run out of options to contain North Korea


U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said Sunday that the UN Security Council has run out of options in terms of containing North Korea's nuclear program.

"We have pretty much exhausted all the things that we could do at the Security Council at this point," Haley told CNN's Dana Bash on "State of the Union."

Haley also made it clear that if the U.S. were to run out of diplomatic options, she would be "perfectly happy" to hand the matter over to Defense Secretary Jim Mattis who "has plenty of military options."

"We wanted to be responsible and go through all diplomatic means to get their attention first," Haley said. "If that doesn't work, General Mattis will take care of it."

Haley said the new sanctions have economically strangled North Korea at this point

But, Haley warned that if the situation were to escalate into a war, "North Korea will be destroyed."

"None of us want war," she said. "But we also have to look at the fact that you are dealing with someone who is being reckless, irresponsible and is continuing to give threats not only to the United States, but to all their allies, so something is going to have to be done."

During the CNN interview, Haley declined to clarify what President Donald Trump meant last month when he vowed to wreak "fire and fury" on North Korea if it continues to threaten the United States.

Haley, however, assured CNN, "It was not an empty threat."

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