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Russia has refused to rule out deploying nuclear weapons as the Kremlin issues threats over the full-scale invasion in Ukraine.
Yesterday (Tuesday, March 22), Vladimir Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov struggled to give a direct answer when he was questioned over the likeness of whether Russia would use nukes against the war-torn country.
During an interview with CNN, Peskov stated that Russian doctrine allows Putin to push the button to wave off "existential threats" which sparked concerns that he could find an excuse to use weapons against Ukraine.
But his response caused fury with Pentagon, as spokesperson John Kirby branded Peskov's answer as "dangerous" and said it is "not the way a responsible nuclear power should act."
Kirby went on to say that the US is monitoring Russia's nuclear arsenal and has not noticed any signs that it is planning to apply the weapons, reports Daily Mail.
Putin has previously issued a warning to anyone "who might be tempted to meddle in the ongoing events: whoever tries to stand in our way or create threats for our country."
The tyrant said: "People should know Russia’s response will be immediate and lead you to consequences you have never encountered in your history."
And just days after he launched the invasion, the Russian leader ordered his nuclear forces to be switched onto 'special alert' on February 27.
Ukraine's glam female soldiers continue to bravely resist Putin by dancing on TikTok
Following the careless call, fears have grown that Putin could be contemplating whether to use a low-yield 'tactical' nuclear as Ukraine continues to build its resistance.
Former US defence secretary Leon Panetta said the alarming interview with Peskov demonstrates that Russia is "looking for a possible excuse for the use of low-yield nuclear weapons."
He added: "I think that presents a real concern that Russia at least is considering that possibility.
"I don’t know that it’s going to happen. I still think that Putin has to worry about how the US would respond and he has to worry about his own survival."
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- Russia Ukraine war
- Vladimir Putin
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