The US is in “direct contact” with North Korea, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said.
Mr Tillerson said Washington was “probing” the possibility of talks with Pyongyang, “so stay tuned”.
“We have lines of communications to Pyongyang,” he said during a trip to China. “We’re not in a dark situation.”
North Korea and the US have engaged in heated rhetoric in recent months but it was not previously known they had lines of communication.