Putin hints at nuclear retaliation if West intervenes in Ukraine
He also said Western attempts to economically strangle Russia through sanctions had failed.
Mr Putin said the Kremlin’s response would be “lightning fast” if any country intervenes in what he calls Russia’s “special operation” in Ukraine.
“We have all the tools for this, that no one else can boast of having,” he said, in an apparent reference to recent Russian tests of hypersonic and intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) that can carry nuclear weapons.
Last week, Russia said it carried out a successful test launch of the RS-28 Sarmat ICBM– known in the West as Satan 2 – one of the most destructive missiles in the world.
“We won’t boast about it, we’ll use them, if needed. And I want everyone to know that,” he added. “All decisions on this matter have been taken.”
Mr Putin also insisted the Russian economy was weathering Western sanctions.
“They implemented new sanctions restrictions and even today’s plans to strangle us economically have failed,” Mr Putin said.
He was speaking after Polish and Bulgarian leaders accused Moscow of using natural gas to blackmail their countries after Russia’s state-controlled energy company stopped supplying them with gas on Wednesday.
European Union leaders echoed those comments and were holding an emergency meeting on the Russian move.
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