Now playing
00:58
Tillerson: Mend, don't end, Iran deal
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson makes a statement to the press at the State Department in Washington, DC, October 4, 2017.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson denied Wednesday he had considered resigning from Donald Trump's cabinet and dismissed a report that he had called the president a "moron" as "petty nonsense." "The vice president has never had to persuade me to remain as secretary of state because I have never considered leaving this post," Tillerson said, denying an NBC News report.
 / AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON        (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson makes a statement to the press at the State Department in Washington, DC, October 4, 2017. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson denied Wednesday he had considered resigning from Donald Trump's cabinet and dismissed a report that he had called the president a "moron" as "petty nonsense." "The vice president has never had to persuade me to remain as secretary of state because I have never considered leaving this post," Tillerson said, denying an NBC News report. / AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:30
Did Tillerson just take a veiled shot at Trump?
US President Donald Trump speaks alongside Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (L) during a Cabinet Meeting in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, DC, October 16, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB        (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
US President Donald Trump speaks alongside Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (L) during a Cabinet Meeting in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, DC, October 16, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:34
Trump fires Tillerson, hints at more changes
TILLERSON: MY HOPE YOU WILL BE GUIDED BY VALUES -
CNN
TILLERSON: MY HOPE YOU WILL BE GUIDED BY VALUES -
Now playing
01:58
Tillerson: Washington a 'mean-spirited town'
pool
Now playing
01:44
Tillerson speaks after being fired
Tillerson statement 03132018
POOL
Tillerson statement 03132018
Now playing
00:37
Tillerson calls out 'troubling' Russia actions
cnn
Now playing
00:37
Rex Tillerson: I'll be here for all of 2018
tillerson trump tenure orig vstan me_00000423.jpg
tillerson trump tenure orig vstan me_00000423.jpg
Now playing
01:50
Trump and Tillerson's tense relationship
CNN
Now playing
00:29
Tillerson calls resignation rumors 'laughable'
US President Donald Trump speaks alongside Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (L) during a Cabinet Meeting in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, DC, October 16, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB        (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images
US President Donald Trump speaks alongside Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (L) during a Cabinet Meeting in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, DC, October 16, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
01:56
Source: WH wanted to publicly shame Tillerson
Now playing
02:19
Tapper to Tillerson: Did you call Trump a moron?
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson pauses during a briefing at the Department of State   on August 22, 2017 in Washington, DC.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson acknowledged Tuesday that North Korea has shown a "level of restraint" in not conducting nuclear or missile tests since new UN sanctions were imposed. And he expressed the hope that it was a sign of Pyongyang's readiness to enter peace and disarmament talks with Washington "sometime in the near future."
 / AFP PHOTO / Brendan Smialowski        (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson pauses during a briefing at the Department of State on August 22, 2017 in Washington, DC. US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson acknowledged Tuesday that North Korea has shown a "level of restraint" in not conducting nuclear or missile tests since new UN sanctions were imposed. And he expressed the hope that it was a sign of Pyongyang's readiness to enter peace and disarmament talks with Washington "sometime in the near future." / AFP PHOTO / Brendan Smialowski (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
01:25
Tillerson under fire for turmoil at State Dept.
Now playing
01:30
Corker: Tillerson not getting support he needs
Now playing
00:20
Trump: Total confidence in Rex Tillerson
Rex Tillerson
CNN
Rex Tillerson
Now playing
02:18
Rex Tillerson addresses rumors on quitting
rex tillerson non answers origwx bw_00000000.jpg
rex tillerson non answers origwx bw_00000000.jpg
Now playing
01:18
Rex Tillerson perfects the non-answer

Story highlights

"The whole reason we're looking at this Iran agreement is because of North Korea," Haley said

She said the US would stay in the deal for now

(CNN) —  

US ambassador Nikki Haley said Sunday the Trump administration’s approach to the Iran deal is aimed at avoiding another situation like in North Korea.

“What we’re saying now with Iran is don’t let it become the next North Korea,” the US ambassador to the United Nations said in an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

President Donald Trump’s declaration that Iran was violating the multilateral nuclear agreement and his threat that the US could exit it sent a message that North Korea should not expect the US to make a bad deal, Haley said.

Trump’s threat to pull the US out of the deal with Iran, potentially collapsing the Obama-era agreement, was also intended to pressure North Korea as that nation continues to develop its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile capabilities.

“The whole reason we’re looking at this Iran agreement is because of North Korea,” Haley said.

But despite Trump’s move on Friday and her own staunch criticism of the agreement, Haley anticipated that the US would remain in the deal for the time being.

“I think right now you’re going to see us stay in the deal because what we hope is that we can improve the situation, and that’s the goal,” Haley said. “We’re in the deal to see how we can make it better.”

She also said Defense Secretary James Mattis and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Joseph Dunford were “not wrong” to say Iran was in compliance with the nuclear agreement.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson sounded a similar note in an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday morning. He said the US was trying to stay in the deal, while seeking improvements and addressing its broader concerns with Iran’s actions.

Trump’s move on Friday pushed the issue to Congress, which Haley said the administration hoped would improve the situation.

“We should let them follow through and see what they can do to make it better,” Haley said.

She claimed Trump would work closely with Congress to try to forge a deal the administration preferred.