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Vladimir Putin warns of 'major conflict' over North Korea missile test

Tensions on Korean Peninsula are at their highest point after a series of missile tests by Pyongyang

AFP | PTI  |  Moscow 

Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin

Russian President warned today of a "major conflict" looming on the Korean Peninsula, calling for talks to alleviate the crisis after fired a missile over Japan this week.

"The problems in the region will only be solved via direct dialogue between all concerned parties, without preconditions," Putin said.

"Threats, pressure and insulting and militant rhetoric are a dead end," a statement from his office said, adding that heaping additional pressure on in a bid to curb its nuclear programme was "wrong and futile."

Tensions on the are at their highest point in years after a series of missile tests by

Early on Tuesday, the reclusive state fired an intermediate-range Hwasong-12 over Japan, prompting President Donald Trump to insist that "all options" were on the table in an implied threat of pre-emptive military action.

The UN Security Council denounced North Korea's latest missile test, unanimously demanding that halt the programme.

heavy bombers and stealth jet fighters took part in a joint live fire drill in on Thursday, intended as a show of force against the North, Seoul said.

Putin said he feared the peninsula was "on the verge of a major conflict" and called for all sides to sign up to a mediation programme drawn up by Moscow and Beijing.

He echoed comments by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov who in a Wednesday telephone call with counterpart Rex Tillerson "underscored... The need to refrain from any military steps that could have unpredictable consequences."

The Russia-China plan involves a mutual pause in missile tests by and joint South Korean-US military exercises by Seoul.

First Published: Fri, September 01 2017. 18:00 IST