Tillerson defends strained 'special relationship' on UK visit

Tillerson defends strained 'special relationship' on UK visit

London: Secretary of State Rex Tillerson defended the "special relationship" between Britain and the United States during a visit to London on Monday, following a series of spats since the election of Donald Trump that have strained ties.

Tillerson paid a discreet visit to the new US embassy in London after Trump cancelled plans to open it himself -- the latest in a spate of damaging rows.

The top US diplomat later met with counterpart Boris Johnson and Prime Minister Theresa May, speaking of the need to reset the relationship between the historic allies.

"We spend a lot of time talking about the world's problems... and sometimes we forget about the importance of our own relationship," Tillerson said as he met Johnson.

"We need to pay attention to that relationship... we treasure it," he added.

Johnson described the relationship as "absolutely fundamental" to Britain's economy.

The pair talked about the Iranian nuclear agreement, Yemen and Turkey's assault on Kurdish militia in Syria.