Russia refuses to rule out using nuclear weapons

Moscow, March 23 : Russian President Vladimir Putin’s chief spokesman Demitry Peskov has refused to rule out the possibility of using nuclear weapons against Ukrainst. In an interview with CNN on Tuesday, Peskov repeatedly refused to rule out that Russia would consider using nuclear weapons against what Moscow saw as an “existential threat.” “If it is an existential threat for our country, then it can be,” he said. In February, President Vladimir Putin said, “No matter who tries to stand in our way or all the more so create threats for our country and our people, they must know that Russia will respond immediately, and the consequences will be such as you have never seen in your entire history.” Speaking on what Putin thought he had achieved in Ukraine so far, Peskov answered: “Well, first of all, not yet. He hasn’t achieved yet. He further said that the “special military operation” — the Kremlin’s official euphemism for Russia’s invasion in Ukraine — was “going on strictly in accordance with the plans and the purposes that were established before hand.” Peskov also repeated Putin’s demands, saying that the “main goals of the operation” are to “get rid of the military potential of Ukraine,” to ensure Ukraine is a “neutral country,” to get rid of “nationalist battalions,” for Ukraine to accept that Crimea — annexed by Russia in 2014 — is part of Russia and to accept that the breakaway statelets of Luhansk and Donetsk “are already independent states.” He also claimed that Russia has only attacked military targets, despite numerous reports of Russian airstrikes against civilian targets sheltering ordinary Ukrainians. RNJ

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