Putin Threatens US with New Weapons if Missiles Deployed to Europe


Moscow will match any U.S. move to deploy new nuclear missiles closer to Russian Federation by stationing its own missiles closer to the United States or by deploying faster missiles or both, President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday (Feb 20).

"It's a very serious threat to us, and we will have to respond".

He said Russian Federation would answer any US move to deploy new missiles closer to Russian Federation by stationing its own new missiles closer to America or by deploying faster missiles.

"I will reiterate Russia's unwillingness deploy missiles in Europe first if they [American medium-range missiles] are not produced and delivered to the European continent, but the United States has such plans".

Signed in 1987 towards the end of the Cold War by then USA president Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, the treaty bans ground-launched missiles with a range of between 315 miles to 3,415 miles.

The Russian president also criticized the USA for implementing new sanctions on them, in order to punish the nation for their attacks on Ukrainian naval vessels back in November.

Vladimir Putin has warned of "reciprocal measures" if the USA deploys missiles in Europe as he delivered his state of the nation address this morning.

President Vladimir Putin says Russian Federation wants friendly relations with the United States and remains open for arms control talks with Washington.

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He added that other new weapons he announced a year ago, including the nuclear-powered Burevestnik cruise missile and the Poseidon nuclear-powered underwater drone, have been undergoing tests successfully.

Putin also unveiled footage of what he said is a new speedy, nuclear-powered underwater drone that could carry nuclear weapons. Putin claimed those accusations were false and suggested Washington was merely looking for a pretext to scuttle the INF so it could deploy land-based missiles to Europe.

Putin also said the development of new nuclear-capable weapons unveiled in his state-of-the-nation address in 2018 was proceeding without delays. Given the purported size of the Poseidon UUV - twice the size of a submarine-launched ballistic missile - the latter number appears to be somewhat more realistic.

While the Russian leader didn't say what specific new weapons Moscow could deploy, his statement further raised the ante in tense relations with Washington.

Almost an hour into this year's speech, Putin had yet to address any global issues.

Putin said the US accusations were "unfounded" and were used to "justify (America's) withdrawal from the treaty".

"I think, they (foreign countries) will think through carefully before doing it, but there is a theoretical possibility (of Russian Federation being cut off from the internet), and that's why we should create segments that don't depend on anyone", Tass quoted Putin as saying.

Elsewhere in the speech, the Russian president promised state aid for large families to try to reverse population decline, an effort he dubbed "more children, fewer taxes".

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