The Russian president, Vladimir Putin, today warned the US not to use force against Iran in the current nuclear dispute.

Any military intervention in the Caspian Sea area would be unacceptable, Mr Putin declared as he attended a five-country regional summit in Tehran.

“We should not even think of making use of force in this region,” Mr Putin told his fellow leaders.

His remarks also appeared directed at Azerbaijan, amid Russian media speculation that the US might be trying to negotiate with the republic on the right to use military facilities there, something Azeri officials deny.

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