Secretary of State Rex Tillerson sent a cable to all U.S. embassies Friday advising diplomats to sidestep questions from foreign governments over President Trump's plans to re-engage in the Paris climate change deal.
If asked, "What is the process for consideration of re-engagement in the Paris Agreement?," the answer should be as vague as possible, according to the cable that Reuters viewed and reported on Tuesday.
The response should go something like this: "We are considering a number of factors. I do not have any information to share on the nature or timing of the process," the cable advised.
The cable was sent the same day that the State Department sent a formal communique to the United Nations stating its intent to withdraw from the 2015 Paris climate change agreement. The notice stated that the administration is open to renegotiating the deal, but Trump has said it is not necessary.
The cable advises U.S. diplomats to expect foreign government representatives to ask questions about Trump's June 1 announcement that he intends to exit the agreement.
The cable said to expect questions like: "Does the United States have a climate change policy?" and "Is the administration advocating the use of fossil fuels over renewable energy?"
When asked about the directive, a State Department official told the Washington Examiner, "We do not comment on internal communications."