Russia and China on Tuesday proposed a plan for defusing tensions over North Korea, suggesting that Pyongyang declare a moratorium on nuclear and missile tests while the United States and South Korea refrain from large-scale military exercises.
The Russian and Chinese foreign ministries made the recommendation in a joint statement after talks between President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping and another North Korean missile test.
The missile flew higher and longer than previous ones North Korea has launched, sparking concerns around the world. Moscow and Beijing called Tuesday's test "unacceptable."
The foreign ministries said that as a "voluntary political decision," North Korea should declare a "moratorium on testing nuclear devices and test launches of ballistic missiles." In turn, the U.S. and South Korea should "accordingly refrain from large-scale joint maneuvers," the joint statement added.
They said "the confronting parties" involved should sit down for talks to agree on principles that include a refusal to use force and a pledge to make the Korean Peninsula free of nuclear weapons.