FAIRBANKS, ALASKA – Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was in Alaska to play host to the eight nations of the Arctic Council on Thursday, trailed by burning questions about Russia and climate change.
The policy forum for the countries of the great white north got underway in the former gold prospecting town of Fairbanks, far away from the political frenzy gripping Washington.
But two of the questions hanging over President Donald Trump’s White House were also on envoy’s minds in Alaska.
Can Washington mend ties with Russia, represented in Fairbanks by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, and will Trump honor the U.S. pledges in the 2017 Paris climate change accord?
“We’ve got a lot to do tomorrow,” Tillerson warned guests at a dinner on the eve of the forum late Wednesday.