A former President of Russia has said he'll 'do anything' to make the nation's enemies 'disappear' in a foul-mouthed tirade against the West.
Dmitry Medvedev, who served as head of state between 2008 and 2012 under Vladimir Putin's political influence, issued the new threats as global tensions continue to intensify over the war in Ukraine.
The 56-year-old is now deputy head of the Kremlin's security council, with his latest barbs being seen by some Russia-watchers as an attempt at a full-scale political comeback in light of his boss's reputed ill-health.
Referring to critics of the Putin regime in the West, he said on his Telegram channel: “I am often asked why my Telegram posts are so harsh.
“I respond – because I hate them. They are b*****s, degenerates.
“They want death to us, to Russia. And while I am alive, I will be doing everything so that they disappear.”
It comes after he suggested last month that Ukraine's allies were taking the world closer to nuclear war by supplying the nation with arms supplies.
He wrote: “The cynicism of Western ‘talking heads’ is becoming more and more blatant. The thesis that Russia frightens the world with a nuclear conflict is being pushed to the top of the agenda”
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Despite Medvedev's rumoured wishes to return to the top of Russian politics, it is understood that Vladimir Putin is looking elsewhere for his replacement.
Analysts are instead tipping little-known Kremlin official Dmitry Kovalev as a possible future leader, who is said to be one of the few people that Putin trusts.
He is known to be a big ice hockey fan and there has been speculation that the two men could have bonded over their mutual love of the sport.
Another potential successor could be 70-year-old former KGB counterintelligence officer Nikolai Patrushev, who is believed to have been selected as the President’s deputy in the event that Putin needed emergency surgery.
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