Putin says Russia is upgrading its nuclear arsenal

Russia is prepared for security talks with NATO countries, President Vladimir Putin said on Friday, while reiterating Moscow's intention to expand its national nuclear arsenal.

Referring to security within the Eurasian region, Putin said on Friday that the Kremlin was “ready for a broad international discussion of these important, vital issues – both with our colleagues in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the CIS, the EAEU, BRICS, as well as with other international associations – including European and NATO countries,” in keeping with a Google-translated Report by the Russian state news agency Tass.

“Of course, if they are ready,” the Russian president added at a gathering with graduates of military universities.

Earlier on the identical day, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov had indicated that Russia's willingness to carry security talks with the United States depended specifically on simultaneous discussions on the war in Ukraine.

“We are open to dialogue, but to a broad, comprehensive dialogue that includes all dimensions, including the dimension related to the conflict over Ukraine, the involvement of the United States in this conflict,” Peskov said, in keeping with a Google translation. Tass report.

His comments were in response to the potential for negotiating with Washington on nuclear risks independent of the Ukraine conflict. CNBC reached out to the US State Department to seek out out whether the White House can be willing to barter under those conditions.

Russia has to this point been largely isolated from Western-led diplomatic efforts to resolve the conflict with Kyiv – and was recently not invited to the summit for peace in Ukraine on 15 and 16 June.

Senior Russian security official Dmitry Medvedev said in a Google-translated Telegram update Talks with the US on a brand new treaty to limit nuclear firepower will only be possible if Washington stops supplying Ukraine with weapons and prevents it from joining NATO.

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Moscow has repeatedly identified that Kyiv's ambitions to hitch the Western-led military alliance pose a threat to its own security and one in every of the explanations for Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. Kyiv has asked for membership but cannot join the coalition so long as an lively conflict is raging on its territory.

“Everything is likely to develop according to a completely different scenario,” Medvedev wrote. He envisioned a scenario during which the United States would fall right into a state of “total psychosis” out of fear of Russian bombing and missile attacks.

“Let all their elite worry! Let them tremble and shake,” he added.

The prospect of nuclear escalation is weighing heavily on NATO's tactical decisions because it considers the subsequent steps in its support for Kyiv. Russia, which inherited many of the collapsed Soviet Union's weapons of mass destruction, has the world's largest nuclear arsenal – with a complete of 5,580 warheads (as of March) between military stockpiles and reserves. According to the Federation of American ScientistsIn comparison, the United States has a complete stockpile of 5,044 warheads.

“We plan to further develop the nuclear triad as a guarantee of strategic deterrence and to preserve the balance of power in the world,” Putin said on Friday. in keeping with ReutersThe so-called “nuclear triad” refers to Russia’s ability to fireside nuclear missiles from land, sea and air.

In February 2023, Putin suspended Moscow's participation within the essential New START nuclear agreement with the USA, without completely withdrawing his country from the agreement. accordancewhich got here into force in 2011 and was prolonged for an extra five years in 2021, obliged Russia and the USA to deploy not more than 700 intercontinental ballistic missiles and a maximum of 1,550 strategic nuclear warheads.

The agreement also allows the 2 countries to conduct as much as 18 inspections of their strategic nuclear weapons sites every year to confirm compliance.

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Russia has suspended its participation within the treaty and rejected US proposals for a dialogue on nuclear arms control. However, the White House continues to support Ukraine militarily.

“We see no interest whatsoever on the part of either the United States or NATO in resolving the Ukraine conflict and listening to Russia's concerns,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said at a press conference in January. in keeping with Reuters.

This yr, Putin escalated his war rhetoric, warning NATO of a possible nuclear conflict if the coalition implemented French President Emmanuel Macron's proposal to send Western troops to Ukraine.

″[The West] must realize that we even have weapons that may hit targets on their territory. All this actually threatens to steer to a conflict with the usage of nuclear weapons and the destruction of civilization. Don't they understand that?” Putin said in his annual state of the nation address in February.

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