The Russian leader mocked the UN attempts to stop North Korea‘s nuclear plans with a wider set of sanctions.
Speaking at a public press conference, Mr Putin said: “Do you think that following the adoption of some sanctions, North Korea will abandon its course on creating weapons of mass destruction?
“As I said to one of my colleagues yesterday, they will eat grass but they will not abandon this programme unless they feel safe.”
Mr Putin said North Korean leader Kim Jong-un feared he would become the next Saddam Hussein if he were to give up his nuclear weapons.
He said that, having seen what happened to Hussein when he disarmed, Kim Jong-un would continue to invest in nuclear development.
Mr Putin continued: “Sanctions of any kind are useless and ineffective in this case.
“Russia condemns these exercises on the part of North Korea. We believe they are provocative in nature. However, we cannot forget about what I just said about Iraq, and what happened later in Libya. Certainly, the North Koreans will not forget it.”
Mr Putin’s comments come as the lonely East Asian country threatened to unleash a lethal attack on Japan, a key US ally in the region.
A North Korean state agency said the DPRK was prepared to “sink” the Japanese archipelago and reduce the United States to “ashes and darkness” as payback for the new sanctions.
Pyongyang’s Korea Asia-Pacific Peace Committee said: “The four islands of the archipelago should be sunken into the sea by the nuclear bomb. Japan is no longer needed to exist near us.”
Tensions between North Korea and the United States continue to grow after President Donald Trump promised to release “fire and fury” on Kim Jong-un for the constant nuclear threats to the US and its Asian allies.