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Putin Warns of North Korea Threat But Criticizes Sanctions

KCNA / Reuters

President Vladimir Putin said on Monday that even though North Korea possess a nuclear arsenal, sanctions against Pyongyang are useless.

“In addition to medium-range missiles, North Korea has long-range artillery and multiple-launch systems” the president said, outlining North Korea's military capacity at the BRICS summit in China.

Putin’s comments in China come amid reports that the North Korea tested its most powerful hydrogen bomb on Sept. 3, and is preparing to launch another ballistic missile.

The president condemned the expansion of North Korea's nuclear arsenal, referring to the country’s recent tests as a “provocation.”

Putin however said that sanctions against North Korea were “useless and ineffective.” 

Russia would not be impacted by fresh sanctions against Pyongyang, he said, because Moscow has virtually “zero trade” with the country.

“They will eat grass, but will not stop their [nuclear] program until they guarantee safety for themselves,” the president said, describing Pyongyang's resolve.

Putin said Russia was "ready to discuss" and "work in solidarity" with the international community to resolve North Korea's isolation.

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