In a new statement issued through the Kremlin’s website, Russian President Vladimir Putin warned that the ongoing standoff between North Korea and the US is dangerous, saying it is close to spilling over into a “large-scale conflict” between the two sides.
Putin faulted both sides, but particularly criticized the US direction, saying that they need to take the initiative in starting direct talks, adding that “provocations, pressure, and bellicose and offensive rhetoric is a road to nowhere.”
Russia has been particularly concerned at the possibility of a war on the Korean Peninsula, because they would doubtless be inundated with North Korean refugees from such a conflict. Putin insisted it is “futile” to try to half North Korea’s nuclear program just through pressure.
Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov concurred, saying he also believes events are building and putting the nations closer to a war, and that steps must be taken to avoid such a conflict. Russia, China, and South Korea have all advocated diplomacy toward North Korea, though President Trump has insisted talking is not the answer.