Moscow/Kyiv – ‘In terms of the threat of nuclear war, you are right, such threat is increasing,’ President Vladimir Putin warned. At the same time, President Putin also assured that Russia would not launch a first nuclear attack and that Russia would also use nuclear weapons only if there were an attack on Russian soil. Putin also warned that the ongoing campaign in Ukraine had lasted longer than expected, but Russia would continue the struggle until its objectives were achieved. While Putin was warning about the threat of nuclear weapons, the media reported the occurrence of a ‘high profile’ prisoner exchange between Russia and the US.
After the Russia-Ukraine conflict started, President Putin ordered his nuclear forces to be on alert. After that, Russia demonstrated its nuclear preparedness by organising nuclear exercises and testing a new nuclear weapon. President Putin also warned that the statements made by Russia regarding nuclear weapons were not empty. In a meeting of military officers held in Russia a few months ago, there was a demand from senior officials to use ‘Tactical Nuclear Weapons’ against Ukraine. After that, some leaders of Russia also made statements about a nuclear attack.
Against this backdrop, Putin raised the issue of the threat of nuclear war at a Wednesday meeting, which was noteworthy. ‘Under no circumstances would Russia use nuclear weapons first and not threaten anyone. We have not gone mad; we are aware of what nuclear weapons are. We aren’t about to run around the world brandishing this weapon like a razor,’ President Putin explained. The Russian President also pointed out that Russia has the most advanced and sophisticated nuclear weapons in the world, but they do not deploy them around the world like the United States.
Putin, who has warned of the threat of nuclear weapons, also signalled a longer military campaign in Ukraine. Achieving the campaign’s objectives in Ukraine will take longer, which could prolong the ongoing conflict. However, the success achieved by Russia during this period has also been significant. Provinces like Kherson and Zaporizhzhia have been annexed to Russia. ‘The Sea of Azov has become an internal part of Russia,’ President Putin warned. He also claimed at this time that the Russian army was moving gradually but in the right way.
Meanwhile, Russia has informed that a new attack on Crimea by Ukraine, which succeeded in attacking bases in Russia for the past few days, was thwarted. Moreover, Ukrainian drones attempted an attack on the Sevastopol base in Crimea on Thursday morning. However, sources in Crimea said that a Russian warship shot down the drones. The Russian media said there was an attack attempt by Ukraine in the Belgorod region, along with the base in Crimea.
Former German Chancellor Angela Merkel has admitted that the 2014 Minsk agreements were part of a plan to equip Ukraine with arms. Russian spokesmen criticised Merkel’s statement provoked a strong reaction from Russia and showed Europe’s two-pronged policy.
Meanwhile, the news of the exchange of ‘high profile’ prisoners between Russia and the US has come to light. Russian media reported that the United States had released arms dealer Viktor Bout from their custody, and he had entered Russia. Besides, Russia has released the American athlete Britteny Griner, and President Joe Biden has confirmed it.