Russia's foreign minister has accused the US ambassador to the United Nations of a "bloodthirsty" stance on North Korea that could significantly worsen tensions.
Sergey Lavrov's statement at a Rome news conference with his Italian counterpart today came two days after Ambassador Nikki Haley said that if war breaks out over North Korea's missile tests, the country would be "utterly destroyed."
Russian news agencies quoted Lavrov as saying: "If somebody is very eager to use force to wipe out North Korea, as the United States' UN envoy said, it was a very bloodthirsty tirade." Haley's remarks followed Pyongyang's latest ballistic missile test.
Lavrov also spoke of having "the impression over the last two months that there is someone in Washington who wants to provoke new actions" by North Korea.