Russian President Vladimir Putin said North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has “won this match” in the contest to acquire nuclear weapons.

Putin called Kim an educated and mature politician in a meeting with Russian editors-in-chief in Moscow on Thursday. He said the North Korean ruler had succeeded in developing a nuclear warhead capable of hitting any target.

Putin’s unusually warm words for the secretive leader came after North and South Korean officials held their first direct talks in more than two years on Tuesday, as diplomatic efforts continue to try to defuse tensions over Kim’s nuclear program. U.S. President Donald Trump, who’s said North Korea won’t be allowed to develop a nuclear missile capable of hitting the U.S., also said Thursday that he expects the crisis with Kim’s regime to be resolved without war.

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