MOSCOW, June 28. /TASS/. The international community should focus its efforts on ensuring the security of North Korea and other nations, not on its disarmament, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an interview with Financial Times published on Thursday.
The Russian leader said the issue of military buildup, including North Korea’s nuclear ambitions, stem from "the tragedies of Libya and Iraq", which "have inspired many countries to ensure their security at all costs."
"What we should be talking about is not how to make North Korea disarm, but how to ensure the unconditional security of North Korea and how to make any country, including North Korea feel safe and protected by international law that is strictly honoured by all members of the international community. This is what we should be thinking about," he said. "Of course, the current situation is fraught with unpredictable scenarios, which we must avoid."
"We should think about guarantees, which we should use as the basis for talks with North Korea," the Russian leader continued. "We must be patient, respect it and, at the same time, take into account the dangers arising from this, the dangers of the nuclear status and the presence of nuclear weapons."
According to Putin, the global community "should think about guarantees, which we should use as the basis for talks with North Korea."
"We must be patient, respect it and, at the same time, take into account the dangers arising from this, the dangers of the nuclear status and the presence of nuclear weapons," he said. "We must respect North Korea’s legitimate security concerns. We must show it respect, and we must find a way of ensuring its security that will satisfy North Korea. If we do this, the situation may take a turn nobody can imagine today."
"Whether we recognise North Korea as a nuclear power or not, the number of nuclear charges it has will not decrease. We must proceed from modern realities, which are that nuclear weapons pose a threat to international peace and security," Putin added.
"You have said correctly that we have a common border, even if a short one, with North Korea, therefore, this problem has a direct bearing on us. The United States is located across the ocean, and the UK is located far away, while we are right here, in this region, and the North Korean nuclear range is not far away from our border. This why this concerns us directly, and we never stop thinking about it," he added.