The Russian President, Vladimir Putin, said Russia will pay more attention to the increase of its nuclear forces, in a speech on the occasion of the Defender of the Fatherland holiday on Thursday and a day before the first anniversary of his invasion of Ukraine. In this framework, he announced the next site of the new Sarmat heavy intercontinental missiles and the mass delivery of Kinzhal and Tsirkon hypersonic missiles to the Armed Forces.
Putin’s comments come after the suspension of a bilateral nuclear arms control treaty with the United States.
“Like before, we will pay more attention to reinforcing the nuclear triad”, Putin said, referring to nuclear missiles on land, sea and in the air.
Putin said that, For the first time, Sarmat ICBMs, a weapon capable of carrying multiple nuclear nuclear warheads, will be deployed this year.
“We will continue the serial production of airborne hypersonic systems and we will begin the mass supply of hypersonic missiles Sea-based Tsirkon”, Putin said in an intervention issued by the Kremlin early on Thursday.
Russia is scheduled to start military exercises with China in South Africa on Friday and has sent a frigate equipped with the hypersonic missiles.
Putin’s speech was charged with emotional nationalism. “This popular holiday symbolizes the heroic history of our Army and Navy, the indestructible relationship of all generations of defenders of the Fatherland,” he said in a video message released by the Kremlin.
The Russian president pointed out that this day “embodies our deep gratitude to the sons and daughters faithful to the Fatherland, to all those who selflessly fought against the enemy for their homeland, for their people, overcame all tests with dignity and brought victory.” after destroying the enemy invasions”.
Putin stressed that “A modern and effective army and fleet are the guarantee of the country’s security and sovereignty, its stable development and its future”, announcing that Russia will continue to develop its Armed Forces.
The Russian president also announced the delivery to the Russian Navy of the missile submarine of the Borei-A project, “Imperator Aleksandr III”, which represents a 100% renovation of the Russian naval strategic forces. “In the next few years the fleet will receive three more submarines of this type,” he added.
President heartily congratulated the “military, volunteers, mobilized, specialists of various professions who are participating in the Russian special military operation” in Ukraine. “Now our fighters heroically fight against neo-Nazism that took root in Ukraine, defend our people in our heroic territories, fight with courage and heroism,” he said.
On the eve of the anniversary of the invasion of Ukraine on February 24, Putin and US President Joe Biden engaged in a verbal confrontation that highlighted global tensions between the two superpowers.
Putin on Tuesday suspended the New START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty) with the United States, accusing the latter of turning the war into a global conflict by arming Ukraine.
In a surprise visit to kyiv on Monday, Biden said the United States and its NATO allies stood for democracy and freedom in Ukraine.
On Wednesday, Biden warned from Warsaw that the START suspension was a “big mistake”but clarified: “I don’t take it that he’s thinking of using nuclear weapons or anything like that.”.
A senior Russian Defense official stated that Moscow would stick to agreed limits on nuclear missiles and would continue to inform the United States of changes in its deployments.
After meeting in Warsaw with the leaders of the eastern flank of NATO, Biden promised that the United States “will defend literally every inch of NATO”, the military alliance that includes some Eastern European countries bordering Russia.
The Kremlin says it views NATO, which could soon expand to include Sweden and Finland, as an existential threat to Russia.
The war in Ukraine, which is the largest land conflict in Europe since World War II, has displaced millions of people, left Ukrainian cities, towns and villages in ruins and disrupted the global economy.
UN Secretary General António Guterres on Wednesday denounced the Russian invasion as a violation of the UN Charter and international law, and condemned Moscow’s threats over the possible use of nuclear weapons.
In two speeches last September, Putin indicated that, if necessary, he would use nuclear weapons to defend Russia.
“We have heard implicit threats to use nuclear weapons. The so-called tactical use of nuclear weapons is totally unacceptable. It is time to take a step back,” Guterres declared.
(With information from Reuters and EFE)
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