Russian President Dmitry Medvedev urged a thorough investigation of the sinking of a South Korean corvette Cheonan before taking any action against North Korea, blamed by Seoul for the attack.
The 1,200-ton South Korean warship sank near the disputed Northern Limit Line in the Yellow Sea on March 26, causing the loss of 46 lives. South Korea says it has proof that North Korea fired a torpedo at the vessel from a submarine, although Pyongyang denies the attack.
"Although only one version has been broadly circulated, we should not take it immediately for granted," Medvedev said in an interview to the U.S. daily Wall Street Journal. "A thorough investigation is needed."
Russia has dispatched a team of its experts to South Korea to gather facts and determine who can be blamed for the incident, which strongly stoke tensions between the two Koreas.
"As soon as the results are obvious and become public knowledge, we can talk about punishing the guilty ... I mean a certain state or some other forces," Medvedev added.
MOSCOW, June 18 (RIA Novosti)