Russian President Vladimir Putin warned it is "impossible to scare" North Korea on Thursday, adding that Pyongyang would always be opposed to quitting its nuclear program because the country views this as its only means of self defense.
Speaking on the sidelines of an economic summit in the Russian city of Vladivostok, Putin explained the international community had promised to lift economic sanctions against the isolated regime in exchange for it discontinuing its nuclear and missile programs.
However, he argued that such an offer would always be dismissed by Pyongyang because the country would continue to prioritize defense over the prospect of greater economic benefits.
"We are telling them that we will not impose sanctions, which means you will live better, you will have more good and tasty food on the table, you will dress better, but the next step, they think, is an invitation to the cemetery. And they will never agree with this," Putin said, according to Reuters.