The Kremlin has insisted Boris Johnson told "a lie" when he claimed Vladimir Putin threatened to kill him in a rocket attack.
Ahead of the invasion of Ukraine, the ex-PM says the Russian President told him: “I don’t want to hurt you, but with a missile, it would only take a minute.”
Mr Johnson said the "extraordinary" telephone conversation took place last February as fears grew that Putin was about to launch a war.
But Moscow disputed the claim, saying there were "no threats with missiles" during the call.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Mr Johnson’s account "was a lie".
"There were no threats with missiles," Mr Peskov said during a conference call with reporters.
"While talking about security challenges to Russia, President Putin said that if Ukraine joins Nato, the potential deployment of US or other Nato missiles near our borders would mean that any such missile could reach Moscow in minutes."
In an interview for a three-part BBC documentary on the difficult relationship between Putin and the West, Mr Johnson said he warned the Russian leader there would be tougher sanctions if he ordered an invasion of Ukraine.
He also said he told him that the escalation would only see Western states increase support for Ukraine, meaning "more Nato, not less Nato" on Russia's borders.
"He said, 'Boris, you say that Ukraine is not going to join Nato any time soon. [...] What is any time soon?' and I said 'Well it's not going to join Nato for the foreseeable future. You know that perfectively well,”' Mr Johnson said of the call.
"He sort of threatened me at one point and said, 'Boris, I don't want to hurt you, but with a missile, it would only take a minute', or something like that.
"I think from the very relaxed tone that he was taking, the sort of air of detachment that he seemed to have, he was just playing along with my attempts to get him to negotiate."
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