WASHINGTON: Despite North Korea’s “provocative” firing of three missiles, the U.S. will continue to push for negotiations to de-escalate tension on the Korean Peninsula, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Sunday.

“We’re going to continue our peaceful pressure campaign, as I have described it, working with allies, working with China as well, to see if we can bring the regime in Pyongyang to the negotiating table with a view to begin a dialog on a different future for Korean Peninsula and North Korea,” Tillerson said on Fox News Sunday.

North Korea fired three short-range ballistic missiles Saturday morning after Kim Jong Un’s regime strongly criticized U.S.-South Korea joint military drills. U.S. Pacific Command said two missiles flew 155 miles while the other appeared to have blown up immediately. Military authorities said they didn’t pose a threat to North America or Guam.

“We do view it as a provocative act — a provocative act against the United States and its allies,” Tillerson said, calling the firing “a violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions.” He said Kim’s regime was “clearly” sending the message “that they are not prepared to completely back away from their position.”

The missile tests came shortly after Tillerson praised North Korea for showing restraint and suggested that talks could take place soon. While the launch violates United Nations resolutions, short-range rockets are generally seen as less provocative than tests of intercontinental ballistic missiles that could deliver a nuclear weapon to the continental U.S.

“I don’t know that we’re wrong,” Tillerson said of his earlier assessment. “I think it’s going to take some time to tell.”

North Korea has conducted more than a dozen missile tests this year, including two intercontinental missiles, sparking a war of words this month between President Donald Trump and Kim’s regime. Tension cooled in recent weeks after Kim didn’t follow through with threats to launch missiles toward Guam, with Trump saying Tuesday that Kim was “starting to respect” the U.S.

The U.N. Security Council this month voted unanimously to tighten sanctions on North Korea, targeting about a third of the nation’s roughly $3 billion in exports. Kim’s regime has said it won’t give up its nuclear weapons and missile program until the U.S. ends its “hostile” policies.