World

Russian diplomat calls Australian threat of physical confrontation with Putin 'immature'

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin listens during a cabinet meeting at the Novo-Ogaryovo residence outside Moscow, Russia, Monday, Oct. 13, 2014.  Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered thousands of his country's troops who were posted near the Ukrainian border to return to their permanent bases. A Kremlin spokesman said Putin had ordered approximately 17,600 troops to return home from the southern region of Rostov.  The withdrawal may be a sign of goodwill ahead of Putin's trip to Milan on Thursday, where he is set to meet with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and European Union leaders.(AP Photo/RIA Novosti, Alexei Druzhinin, Presidential Press Service)

    Russian President Vladimir Putin listens during a cabinet meeting at the Novo-Ogaryovo residence outside Moscow, Russia, Monday, Oct. 13, 2014. Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered thousands of his country's troops who were posted near the Ukrainian border to return to their permanent bases. A Kremlin spokesman said Putin had ordered approximately 17,600 troops to return home from the southern region of Rostov. The withdrawal may be a sign of goodwill ahead of Putin's trip to Milan on Thursday, where he is set to meet with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and European Union leaders.(AP Photo/RIA Novosti, Alexei Druzhinin, Presidential Press Service)  (The Associated Press)

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin heads the Human Rights Council in Moscow's Kremlin, Russia, Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2014. (AP Photo/Kirill Kydryavtsev, Pool)

    Russian President Vladimir Putin heads the Human Rights Council in Moscow's Kremlin, Russia, Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2014. (AP Photo/Kirill Kydryavtsev, Pool)  (The Associated Press)

A Russian diplomat has dismissed the Australian prime minister's threat of a physical confrontation with the Russian president as immature, warning that Vladimir Putin is a judo expert.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott told reporters on Monday he was "going to shirtfront Mr. Putin" at an international summit next month, using an Australian Rules Football term for a head-on shoulder charge to an opponent's chest aimed at knocking the opponent backward to the ground.

Alexander Odoevski, third secretary of the Russian Embassy in Canberra, told Australian Associated Press Abbott's threat was "tough talk" and "immature."

Abbott on Tuesday did not directly answer questions about whether he would carry through with the threat or regretted making it.

But he says he is "absolutely determined to have a very robust conversation" with Putin.